Mohan: Experience will help us

Trinidad Express article.

PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD - Trinidad and Tobago Under-19 skipper Vikash Mohan believes his team has the talent and experience needed to do well in this year’s West Indies Cricket Board Under-19 Championships, which bowls off on Friday in St Kitts.

T&T open their three-day campaign against Jamaica at EGSC Molineaux Ground while their 50-over campaign gets going on August 10 at the same venue.

The Mohan-led side was third in the three-day competition last year behind winners Barbados and second place Guyana and was fifth in the limited overs tournament, which was won by the Windward Islands.

Mohan believes his team has what it takes to come out on top this time around and says the experience from last year’s failed campaign in Barbados will be key to them lifting their performances.

The T&T skipper has with him five other players from the 2013 squad, including last year’s top batsman Jeremy Solozano. 

The other returning players are top-order batsman Andy Gobin, fast bowler Al Small, left-arm spinner Jovan Ali and all-rounder Brian Christmas.

“Our experience could make a difference. We have some players returning from last year and that will be key for us this year. 

“The guys know how hard the tournament is and it is good to go out there and share experience so we could assess the situations and work out our plans quicker than last year,” said Mohan.

He added: “Conditions did not suit us last year. T&T are known mostly for their spinners and the wickets over there (in Barbados) were hard and I think we did not cope with it too well and we took too long to adjust. 

“Hopefully this year we will adjust to the situations better. Not all the time you will get conditions in your favour. The key is to go out there and assess the conditions early and plan to suit,” he added.

Speaking about the 2013 line-up Mohan said: “All through the years, T&T have produced talented players. This year is not different.

“It is just a matter of going out onto the field and performing now. I think we have done all the preparations necessary--batting, bowling fielding and mental--It is just to go out now and execute our plans.”

“We have a good all-round side, but to me to me our strength is in our batting. We have batting from one to 11,” the skipper added.

In terms of their preparations, trainer Adarayll John, coach Kelvin Williams and manager Roland Sampath have all been working hard to get the team physically ready. The players have also had a mental session with former national cricketer Zaheer Ali over the weekend.

Ali, who played 10 first-class matches from 1999 before leaving the game in 2003, spoke to the cricketers about some external factors that he thinks are important for all-round success.

Among the topics he discussed were setting realistic, smart and specific goals, effective communication, teamwork and basic cricket tactics that he said could make the difference between success and failure. 

“I am hoping it (the session) does make an impact. An hour and 15 minutes is just a drop in the ocean but if they implement those things in the way they were advised, I think we will definitely see that level of success coming out of it,” said Ali.

Wed, 07/17/2013 - 07:56