WEST INDIES Emerging Players captain Yannic Cariah said his team played like a family despite coming together two days before the start of the Colonial Medical Insurance Super50 Tournament. The team played as a cohesive unit storming to the title with a massive 205-run victory over Leeward Islands Hurricanes at the Queen’s Park Oval in St Clair, last Sunday.
Cariah had a solid all-round performance in the final scoring 34 to help Emerging Players to 293/7 in 50 overs batting first. In response, the Hurricanes were bundled out for 88 in 26.5 overs with leg-spinner Cariah taking 3/8 in five overs.
The other teams trained for weeks leading up to the tournament, but Cariah was elated the team was able to play at a high level despite the last-minute preparations.
“It was tough at the beginning...(but) we played as a team, we played as a family and in that short period of time we got the job done and won the title.”
The team included players who were overlooked by their respective franchise teams including TT players Cariah and wicket-keeper/batsman Joshua Da Silva. The team also included West Indies Under-19 players such as Kimani Melius, Leonardo Julien and Ashmead Nedd.
The Emerging Players captain believes his players were eager for success after not being selected by their franchises. Cariah trained with the TT Red Force leading up to the tournament, but was not chosen for the final squad.
“Most definitely (we were hungry) because a lot of guys want to be in their franchises, want to play for their country as well. It did not happen, but God works in mysterious ways...plenty people counted us out (but) it gave us great motivation to go out there and deliver.”
Cariah, who enjoys playing for Red Force, was not consistent during the tournament as he battled the flu. “I always want to play for my country but it did not happen, it did not work out the way I wanted to but for me personally at the start of the tournament I was not 100 per cent. I had the flu and the majority of the tournament my energy level was low...I still try to contribute to the team’s success.”
Cariah, 27, has played 59 First Class matches. He has scored 2,392 runs at an average of 26.28 and has taken 50 wickets.
Cariah, a former West Indies Under-19 player, wants to play for the senior team one day but knows he has to be consistent if he wants to earn selection. Cariah played for the West Indies Under-19 team at the 2010 World Cup which included current West Indies senior players Jason Holder, Evin Lewis, Jomel Warrican, Kraigg Brathwaite, John Campbell and Shane Dowrich.