More thought, less bravado - Haynes
North Sound, Antigua – West Indies Selector Robert Haynes believes that batsmen in the Caribbean need curb their obsession with boundaries and apply more thought to their approach to batting in order to achieve greater success.
“We struggle on the slow pitches and it is evident in regional cricket where our spinners dominate, so it tells me that the batsmen must assess the conditions better, think about building their innings and not just focus on hitting boundaries,” reasoned Haynes while watching the West Indies A take on Bangladesh A at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Grounds.
“We’re going for boundaries but we need to pay greater attention on getting more singles and twos. I saw teams in the Regional Super50 in Guyana scoring below 200 runs but facing 150 and more dot balls so what that tells me is that the batsmen are not focussed on keeping the score ticking,” observed the 47 year old former Jamaica leg spinner who turned out in eight One Day Internationals for the West Indies.
He recommends that young batsmen around the region look at senior West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul and learn from his approach.
“The young batsmen need to take a leaf out of Shiv’s book, he’s a true professional and every innings he plays in Test cricket is a lesson in batting, he demonstrates how to play based on the conditions and how to construct an innings,” Haynes advised.
Chanderpaul, the 37 year old Guyanese master batsman scored 118 in the first innings of the on-going opening Test against India on a tough pitch at the Feroze Shah Kotla Stadium. It is his 24th century in Test cricket and he is now joint third on the West Indies all-time list of century makers with Sir Viv Richards. They sit behind Sir Garry Sobers (26) and Brian Lara (34).
“In recent times we are beginning to see in the Test team that the batsmen like Kirk Edwards and Darren Bravo are beginning to apply themselves and understand their role but there is more work which needs to be done to get us to where we want to be as a team,” the former award winning Jamaica coach said.
He believes that with the proliferation of spin not only in regional but international cricket that the batsmen need to adapt faster and bat smarter.
“We saw India opening their bowling with spin in the second innings so the batsmen must recognize the trend in cricket and play with softer hands, be more watchful and patient and look to build partnerships,” said Haynes who serves along with Chairman Clyde Butts and former West Indies and Barbados wicket keeper Courtney Browne on the WICB Selection Committee.