QUEEN’S Park Cricket Club (QPCC) coach Imran Jan pointed to his team’s planning and communication during the covid19 pandemic as the reason for the club’s smooth transition back to cricket which led to two titles in as many weeks.
QPCC defeated Central Sports by 108 runs in the Premiership I 50-over final at Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba, on May 1.
On Friday, QPCC clinched the TT Cricket Board T20 Festival with an 86-run win over PowerGen at the National Cricket Centre in Balmain, Couva.
Yannic Cariah and Akeal Hosein were among the stars for the Parkites in the T20 final.
Leg spinner Cariah grabbed a hat-trick and Hosein smacked 80 not out off 24 balls.
It was Cariah’s second consecutive hat-trick after getting one in the semifinals against Clarke Road Utd.
QPCC’s victory on Friday ended a perfect run for the club. The Parkites won 12 matches in a row on their way to the 50-over and T20 titles.
Reflecting on the T20 final, Jan said, “I thought we were outstanding. It was the first time in the tournament that we batted first so we set out a target of 160, 170, but with Akeal joining Darren Bravo and pushing that score over 200 that was simply outstanding. The way we finished that innings, the momentum was certainly with us and I think we knocked all the wind out of PowerGen.”
Jan also commended Cariah for his performance with the ball in the semifinals and finals.
QPCC have been a dominant club in local cricket for decades, producing many cricketers who have gone on to represent the West Indies.
Over the last 15 years, some of the QPCC players who have represented the regional team are Dwayne and Darren Bravo, Kieron Pollard, Sunil Narine, Nicholas Pooran, Shannon Gabriel, Jayden Seales, Anderson Phillip, Khary Pierre, Akeal Hosein, Jeremy Solozano and Joshua Da Silva.
The club regularly has players on either West Indies or TT Red Force duty and oftentimes remain competitive and win titles.
“A lot of teams have always come out and say we missing players…we miss and continue to miss players,” Jan said.
“We plan very well and what we have is a very good pool of players. For example, we had (Red Force spinner) Bryan Charles joining us this year. We get players (and) players come to us…we plan very well before the season.”
QPCC had two teams this year featuring in the top flight of local club cricket.
“To get the combinations right it is always important and it is something we have always focused on.”
Discussing how the club tried to keep their members active during the pandemic, Jan said, “What we have done at Queen’s Park is create a communication link. I have stayed in touch with 90 per cent plus of the players. I always followed up what we could do physically, mentally and probably tactically because we could not do much training collectively. When we were waiting on the green light from the TTCB and the Government we were already sort of prepared and knew what we were going to do, how we are going to do it and where and when we are going to do it.”
Jan also said having access to world-class facilities at Queen’s Park Oval in St Clair gives his players a head start. The oval is equipped with indoor and outdoor nets and a ground that is maintained constantly. Many clubs in TT don’t have access to proper training facilities.