Sports

BCA names 14-member squad for ICC T20 qualifiers

The Bahamas Cricket Association (BCA) has selected a 14-member squad for the upcoming International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Men’s TwentyTwenty (T20) World Cup Americas set for November 2-12 in Antigua and Barbuda.

Representing The Bahamas are Gregory Taylor II (captain), Marc Taylor, Jagnauth Jagroo, Festus Benn (wicket-keeper), Marlon Graham, Kevin Hinds, Jonathan Barry, Gregory Irvin, Sandeep Goud, Everette Haven, Junior Scott, Bermishwar Jagroo, Orlando Stuart and Renford Davson.

The head coach is Andy Moles, and managing the team is Heskett Dean.

The tournament was originally set for August 2020 but because of the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was rescheduled for July of this year. Then it was rescheduled for the current date. The team has intensified its preparation over the past two months. Moles, who hails from England, has been brought in to coach the team for this tournament.

The experienced Moles has been here in The Bahamas for a month working with the team. The players have not played a match since sports leagues were shut down locally in March of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Moles said the fitness levels of the players are improving and assisting with their cricket skills as they are able to practice longer.

“I think it’s the intensity of practice, you know. I’m trying to instill in them that we need to practice at match intensity and at times we just relax a little bit in practice and are laughing and joking, which is fine because we’re here to enjoy ourselves, but you know if we want to improve, we have to make sure that we practice with the intensity that they want to play in the game,” Moles said. “They’re starting to improve. I don’t know the standards of the teams because I have not worked at this level before. I’ve always worked at the higher echelon of world cricket, but I know that we are getting better and in another month we want to improve on quite a few things. America and Canada are the two favorites in our part of the world, so we have to be ready to compete against them.”

BCA President Greg Taylor Sr. said he expects the team to do well. He said most of the teams they are up against were also not playing because of the pandemic.

“Well, quite frankly, I expect us to do well… this is T20. This is an even keel. Anything could happen in any game, so, I believe we will do well. It’s my expectation to do well. If we cannot win the tournament, I expect to come second where we could move on to the world cup qualifiers, which would be in Europe. That would be one step away from the 2022 World Cup so we need to sneak some wins in here and do a knockout punch and see where we can go,” the senior Taylor stated.

On the pitch, he feels that the team’s batting and bowling is good. He feels that the fielding aspect of the game will improve as the team continues to practice.

“We have a few batsmen who we expect to do something for the team, and they need to do something for the team to be successful. As far as bowlers, we have quite a few you who are good bowlers. In a T20 match, you need two 

batsmen to really get off and do something. The fielding might be a little shaky right now because the guys are getting their legs back. I expect it to do well,” Taylor said.

The Bahamas has the lowest rank among the eight teams that are in the competition. Unfortunately, for The Bahamas, the country has not played in an ICC tournament in almost 12 years, and as a result, has dropped in the rankings. The other teams in the tournament are the United States of America, Canada, Argentina, Belize, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and Panama.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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