Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
National all-rounder André Russell says Jamaica will have to hit the ground running in the West Indies Cricket Board NAGICO Insurance Super50 in Trinidad and Tobago as the team has been drawn in a very competitive group.
Jamaica will play in Group A alongside title-holders Windward Islands, Guyana, and guest team Ireland. Group B, meanwhile, is made up of hosts Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Combined Campuses and Colleges, and the Leeward Islands.
"I believe it is a fairly competitive group and will require us to hit the road running," said Russell. "The Windwards played well last year to win the tournament, and I am sure they will be going all out to try and successfully defend their title.
"Guyana, meanwhile, have always been a good team with batsmen like (Shivnarine) Chanderpaul and (Ramnaresh) Sarwan, and bowlers like (Davendra) Bishoo and (Veerasammy) Permaul who can turn matches.
No easy teams
"As for Ireland, they are pretty much unknown, however, with players such as Kevin O'Brien and others who would have played the (ICC) World and One Day Internationals, so they, too, should be a force to be reckoned with."
"So there aren't any easy teams really, and if we are to advance, we will have to turn up each game.
Jamaica will open their campaign against the Windwards next Thursday at Queen's Park Oval. They will play Guyana in their second match on Tuesday, February 4 before wrapping up against Ireland on Saturday, February 8.
The semi-finals are set for Wednesday, February 12, and Thursday, February 13, with the final slated for Saturday, February 15.