Archive for October, 2011
In January, the Sussex Sharks cricket team will jet off to the West Indies for the Caribbean Twenty20 (CT20) tournament. The event, held annually, is unusual, in that both domestic and international teams are invited to participate, with the victor receiving upwards of $25,000 (£15,500) in prize money, and a place in the Champions League.
The Netherlands, Canada, Sussex, and seven teams native to the West Indies, including Barbados, Jamaica, and this year’s winners, Trinidad and Tobago, will trade blows and cricket balls between January 9-22, next year, in the hope of being crowned the next CT20 champions. Those looking at the betting will be keeping a close eye on things.
Mark Robinson, manager at Sussex, said that the CT20 will allow the side to field players who, ordinarily, see little action in the County Championships, such as younger signings. “It will be good for them, and allow us to see how well they are developing.” Dave Brooks, also at Sussex, said that the team are “very much looking forward” to the start of the CT20.
The last instalment of the competition ended on January 24, this year, when Trinidad and Tobago racked up a 36 run victory over England’s Hampshire. The game was a rout for the county side, who struggled in the absence of injured batter, Johann Myburgh. “It’s a shame. We were beaten by a far better side”, Giles White, boss at Hampshire, said.
White continued to say that the experience of playing in front of a “hostile crowd”, and in “foreign conditions” was invaluable for his cricketers. However, given that Hampshire were relegated from the County Championship at the end of last season, it is debatable how well that knowledge was applied by the team. Pundits like Michael Vaughan will be keeping an eye on things.
Created to revitalise cricket in the ‘Windies’, the CT20 features a group stage with four self-contained leagues, followed by two semi-finals.
West Indies is falling deeper into decline and it reached new lows with a one-day eight-wicket defeat to Bangladesh, which highlighted the major floors in the current squad.
Issues between the cricket board and senior players have led to young, inexperienced players having to hold the fort and that is being shown up in recent results.
The Windies can get away with it in Twenty20 cricket, in which a shoot-out can often go either way and the exuberance of youth will sometimes win out. But in the 50-over and five-day formats, it is a totally different story.
Thes likes of Viv Richards, Courtney Walsh and Brian Lara must be shaking their heads in disbelief when they look sat the current world rankings. West Indies are currently seventh in the Test standings and have slipped eighth in the ODI rankings. Fans of on line betting will know how poor they are.
The latest one-day indignity saw the Windies bowled out for just 61 against a Bangladesh team moving in the opposite direction and showing real promise.
The likes of Tamim Iqbal and Mushfiqur Rahim now have more experience than most of the Windies camp, who are relying heavily, and too much so, on skipper Darren Sammy. People looking at the mobile sports betting should remember this.
It’s not all doom and gloom for Caribbean cricket fans, with some promising youngsters showing signs of making the grade, but they are having to perform at the top level in a struggling side with little on-field guidance.
If West Indies are going to ever threat the best Test nations again, they will have to recall their experienced players to help the youngsters progress quicker. Any squad in the world would welcome Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul into their ranks and no-one needs them as badly as the Windies do!