Carib T20 mission - Jamaica seek to end title drought
Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
Get the little things right. That is the mantra of Jamaica captain David Bernard Jr, who along with other members of the team, left the country yesterday for Antigua and Barbuda, where they will participate in the first phase of the Caribbean Twenty20 Tournament.
The second phase will be held in Barbados.
"It will not be easy to win, as there are a number of top quality teams in the tournament, but if we play together as a team and stick to the basics, especially as it relates to this format of the game, anything is possible," said Bernard Jr.
"We have a fairly new squad with a nice blend of experience and youth, who on their day are all capable of being match winners, and with the Twenty20 being a format that caters to this kind of cricket, I believe we have a good chance of winning."
Jamaica, who are aiming to cop their first regional Twenty20 title, despite four previous tries, two during the Stanford Twenty20 Tournament, and two during the first two years of the Caribbean Twenty20, will open their account tomorrow against the Combined Campuses and Colleges at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
The game, which is slated to get underway at 8 p.m. (local time), will be shown live on cable television network, ESPN.
The two have been drawn in Group B of the tournament along with England Twenty20 championship champions, Sussex Sharks, the Netherlands and Barbados.
Jamaica will play Sussex on Thursday in their second game at 4 p.m. (local time), Barbados on Saturday in their third at 8 p.m (local time), and round off their preliminary round fixtures against the Netherlands at 4 p.m. (local time) next Friday.
The team, which will be without Chris Gayle, who is currently participating in Australia's Big Bash Twenty20 League, in addition to Bernard Jr, will bank their hopes on the tournament's top runs-getters for the past two seasons, Marlon Samuels, Danza Hyatt, Andre Russell, Carlton Baugh Jr, Krishmar Santokie, and Nikita Miller.
They will also look to several up-and-coming young players, including West Indies Twenty20 representative Nkrumah Bonner, exciting 19-year-old opener Kenar Lewis, Horace Miller, Sheldon Cotterell, and Andre McCarthy.
The national selection panel, citing the need to pick players who are in form and best suit the Twenty20 format of the game, left out opener Xavier Marshall, former captain Tamar Lambert, Brenton Parchment and Andrew Richardson from the team's 14-man squad following the national trials.
Squad: David Bernard Jr (captain), Danza Hyatt, Kenar Lewis, Marlon Samuels, Andre McCarthy, Horace Miller, Nkrumah Bonner, Shawn Findlay, André Russell, Carlton Baugh Jr, Nikita Miller, Odean Brown, Sheldon Cotterell, Krishmar Santokie.
Reserves: Simon Jackson, Xavier Marshall, Damion Jacobs, Andrew Richardson.
ANTIGUA - Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Grounds
Windward Islands vs Trinidad and Tobago (4 p.m.)
Leewards Islands vs Guyana (8 p.m.)
Sussex vs the Netherlands (4 p.m.)
CCC vs Jamaica (8 p.m.)
Canada vs Windward Islands (4 p.m.)
Leeward Islands vs Trinidad and Tobago (8 p.m.)
Sussex vs Jamaica (4 p.m.)
The Netherlands vs Barbados (8 p.m.)
Canada vs Leeward Islands (4 p.m.)
Guyana vs Trinidad and Tobago (8 p.m.)
Sussex vs CCC (4 p.m.)
Barbados vs Jamaica (8 p.m.)
BARBADOS - Kensington Oval
Canada vs Guyana (4 p.m.)
Leeward Islands vs Windward Islands(8 p.m).
The Netherlands vs CCC (4 p.m.)
Sussex vs Barbados (8 p.m.)
Canada vs Trinidad and Tobago (4 p.m.)
Guyana vs Windward Islands (8 p.m.)
The Netherlands vs Jamaica (4 p.m.)
CCC vs Barbados (8 p.m.)
Semi Final 1 - Group A 1 vs Group B 2(4 p.m.)
Semi Final 2 - Group A 2 vs Group B 1(8 p.m.)
3rd Place Playoff - Loser SF 1 vs Loser SF 2 (4 p.m.)
Final - Winner SF 1 vs Winner SF 2 (8 p.m.)