U-19s seek early prep for World Cup
ST JOHN'S, Antigua (CMC):
West Indies Under-19 head coach, Graeme West, says their participation in the NAGICO Super 50 tournament is part of a long-term build-up for the next ICC Under-19 World Cup next year.
The Windies Under-19s have been drawn in Group B, next to the Jamaica Franchise, Leeward Islands Hurricanes and hosts Trinidad & Tobago Red Force.
"This tournament will be the start point for our countdown to the next ICC Under-19 World Cup," said West.
"We want to assess the players and identify their strengths, so that we can start to build the nucleus of the side that we want to send to the World Cup next year. To be successful, we will need to develop a core group of players that have played at the highest level that we can make available to them at this stage."
Windies Under-19 includes Ramaal Lewis, the incumbent Windies Under-19 captain; Roland Cato, the Windwards Under-19 captain; and Tagenarine Chanderpaul, who has played for the senior Guyana team.
"We have added a few players that are a bit over the age limit but have played at the previous World Cup, to give the side a bit more of a competitive edge," West explained.
"Given the quality of the opposition that we were due to face, we felt we needed a bit more depth in the side, and that's why these three players have been added."
Also included are fast bowler Alzarri Joseph, who played at the last World Cup and has been knocking on the door of the senior Leewards side in recent times; Kemo Paul, an all-rounder who caught the eye during the last Regional Under-19 tournament; and opener Shimron Hetmyer, who recently played first-class matches for Guyana in the WICB Professional Cricket League Regional 4-Day Tournament.