The West Indies team arrived in Guyana late Sunday night and got down to business immediately on Monday as they prepare for the ICC World T20 Tournament. The Windies had a full training session at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence – the venue for their two Group D matches against Ireland (Friday, April 30) and England (Monday, May 3).
Skipper Chris Gayle, just back from his stint with the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League, was confident when he spoke on Monday morning and outlined the side’s plans as they look to better their semi-final placing from last year’s event in England.
Gayle said: “This will be a big tournament for each and everyone one of us. It is a chance to step up and be counted. We have a balanced team and all the players are looking to make their mark. Everyone knows their role in the team and should be taking up the responsibility again of making the Caribbean proud in this tournament.”
“We had a very good outing in England in last year’s World T20 … we reached the semifinals and I thought we did very well. We started that Tournament as outsiders and we managed to play some really good cricket and reach the final four. This time around we are at home where we know these conditions better than anyone else so this will be to our advantage. At the same time that comes with pressure, the expectations from our supporters will be very high … We hope the fans will turn out and support us and we promise them some good performances.”
The Captain added: “The team has been preparing very well. They played extremely well and won all the matches in the Jamaica Cricket Association Festival, and the rest us are coming back from the IPL and will be looking to play our part. We have a lot of guys in the team who can be match-winners and good performers. What we will be looking forward will be a good start, make the second round and move on from there. It will not be an easy road … it will be very competitive over the next few weeks… but it will be enjoyable.”
The West Indies will have another full training session at the Guyana National Stadium on Tuesday evening. They will have a warm-up match against New Zealand at the same venue on Wednesday at 5 pm (4 pm Jamaica Time).
SQUAD: Chris Gayle (Captain), Dwayne Bravo (Vice Captain), Shiv Chanderpaul, Andre Fletcher, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Narsingh Deonarine, Wavell Hinds, Denesh Ramdin, Kieron Pollard, Darren Sammy, Sulieman Benn, Nikita Miller, Jerome Taylor, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach.
FIRST ROUND MATCHES
Men’s Group D at Guyana National Stadium
Friday, April 30: vs Ireland at 5 pm (4 pm Jamaica Time)
Monday, May 3: vs England at 1:30 pm (12:30 pm Jamaica Time)