Left-arm spinner buoyed by West Indies recall
PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):Temperamental left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn says his 15 months on the sidelines has not dented his hunger for competitive cricket.
The 30-year-old has not played for West Indies at any level since the World Cup last year because of disciplinary issues, but selectors this week recalled him for the 'A' team's two-match Twenty20 series against India 'A' at Queen's Park Oval here.
Benn, who has undergone rehabilitation since his World Cup missteps, said he was now looking to make a big impression.
"Obviously, it has been a while since I last put on my West Indies shirt. Being called up and selected to play in the West Indies 'A' Team is a privilege and a big opportunity," Benn said.
"I am bowling well, and I am confident in my game and the way I am playing, so I will be looking to make an impact this weekend and enjoy my time in the middle."
He added: "Training has gone really great since I joined the team. It is good to be back in this type of professional set-up again. Coming from club cricket in Barbados and coming back into the international environment are a few steps up, but I have been around for a while now, and I know how to make the adjustment."
The gangling six feet, seven inches, Benn was the region's frontline spinner up until the World Cup when he was dumped in favour of leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo.
Off-spinner Shane Shillingford's return and the emergence of another off-spinner, Trinidadian Sunil Narine, has seen Benn slip even further down the pecking order.
However, with 51 wickets in 17 Tests, 29 wickets in 25 One-Day Internationals and 15 wickets in 17 T20 Internationals he is the most experienced player in the Windies 'A' squad. He said he would be looking to make this count over the weekend.
"(I'm) not looking too far ahead, I just want to enjoy my weekend and perform for West Indies. The team did a huge job to win the four-day series after going a match down, so I just want to come back, fit into the system under coach Hendy Springer, and build on what has been done before," the Barbadian pointed out.
"I am feeling very confident and I am backing myself to do well. It's all about being ready when the call comes. I'm fully prepared when the opportunities come along. I had a long time to prepare for these opportunities, and I will grab it with both hands."