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Barath says Red Force batting must improve

By RENALDO MATADEEN Tuesday, April 3 2012

TRINIDAD AND Tobago opening batsman, Adrian Barath, has admitted that the national team’s sub-par batting let the team down in their failed West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Regional Four-Day campaign.

“We had an average season and we cannot fool ourselves. We need to now assess the positives and negatives taken and improve our future game - especially our batting. It must improve if we are to win titles, especially in lengthier cricketing formats,” confessed Barath in lieu of the 227-run semi- final Barbados defeat. He continued, “Winning the toss and batting first would have been in our favour as we would have set the tempo. Making 84 (first innings) against Barbados was not the best start and that hindered our progression. Introspection shows that we should have spent more time earning runs at the crease but their bowling was up-to-scratch. ”

He indicated that despite rotating players frequently in national squad changes due to players injured or off on West Indian duty was unsettling at times but still not an excuse for the ‘Red Force’.

“These factors must be accounted for and taken into perspective but they were not the major instability factors. Our shot selection and application really let us down and as a team, we all need to better this aspect of our games. We needed much more runs throughout the tournament and this eluded us badly,” he reiterated. The West Indian opener also pointed out that there were pluses such as Kavesh Kantasingh’s prolific and steady emergence in his debut season as well as the call-ups for many domestic players such as Marlon Barclay, Aneil Kanhai and Evin Lewis.

“This shows our depth and we have a lot of youngsters also biting at the chance to make their debuts. The selectors showed that they are willing to call these performers as long as they are consistently doing well. We must hone the development of them more so that they readily step up to grasp the chances when called,” he stated.

Barath also shared that the veterans’ experience needed to be shared with the newer squad members, as he felt Jamaica’s experience gave them a regional edge in their season. “We have quality and quantity in Trinidad (and Tobago) and must cultivate them well for inclusion. These players such as Akeal (Hosein) are not peripheral and we must groom and guide them integrally and adapt when we have first-team players unavailable to represent us,” he divulged.

He further added that these young players are for the long-term with enormous West Indies potential.

The First Citizens Clarke Road stalwart revealed that while concern was shared over the pitches in the Caribbean, there was a pattern that followed in the regional games where the quality of the cricket itself did not meet high expectations. He divulged that the tournament in its entirety needs to elevate in quality so that fans flock to the stands. Barath believes that proper marketing and sponsorship of these regional tournaments also needs to be analysed.

“International marketing is quite high as seen in the IPL and other foreign leagues which are always fan-packed. There’s a high degree of professionalism from the fans to everything else inculcated in the sport and we must strive to this,” he relayed.

Barath concluded that he needed to boost his own form for confidence. With 114 against Guyana, he revealed that this motored him onto making some runs for the Windies in the limited overs matches against Australia but admitted that fitness and technique were things he constantly sought to improve.

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