Walton continues fine start to the season

GROS ISLET, ST LUCIA - He has all the shots in the book, the looks of a batsman, the agility, and the concentration, but somehow Chadwick Walton has achieved everything he looked set to achieve seven years ago.

He went dormant for a few seasons but at the turn of the year, Walton began knocking on doors again, waking people up, reminding the West Indian public of this boy that was once marked as a future Barbados and West Indies player.

Like his teammate, Raymon Reifer, since the Caribbean Twenty20 tournament, Walton has just carried on in his good form, so much so that the selectors will have no choice but to look in his direction for a wicket-keeper/batsman for the upcoming warm-up match that takes place between the UWI Vice Chancellor's XI and the touring Zimbabwe cricket team.

On Monday, he again made a statement to the selectors, striking 88 from 117 balls. In his knock, he struck nine fours and three sixes. He's the type of player that no one gets tired of watching. Even in defense, he looks a pretty batsman. When he gets going, his attacking prowess can be matched by only few in the Caribbean First Class cricket.

However, for all the positives that seem to be following Walton this season, he was left disappointed in not getting a century. He said, "After a long day in the field, after coming back and scoring 88 and rescuing my team from trouble, I was disappointed."

He pinpointed the familiar culprit that seems to be plaguing batsmen's wicket on a good Beausejour wicket. He stated, "It was a lapse in concentration. I played back to a ball that I should have played forward to."

But 88 is still a quite good start to the season, though Walton didn't see it that way. He continued, "It's not really a good start. A score of 88 is just a big half century. It can't be corrected because the next innings I play, I will be starting from zero. What I need is, I need a hundred, hundreds."

Walton credits his spring again in regional cricket down to the work he has been doing teammate/coach, Floyd Reifer. "I've been doing a lot of work with the coaches, Robert Samuels back home and I do a lot of work back at Cavehill with Floyd Reifer so I guess it's finally paying off now."

And it could yet get better for Walton this season. Zimbabwe are due to arrive soon, and a packed cricket calendar demands many cricketers. His maturity has always been there, but it looks like his talent has finally caught up with his age, and now, Walton could be the next name that the West Indies selectors call on. At 27 years, he can still be the player he once promised all he could turn out.

Tue, 02/12/2013 - 06:36