Friday 1st August 2014 – Beausejour, Gros Islet, St. Lucia: The Limacol Caribbean Premier League not only entertains crowds with high-intensity Twenty20 cricket, but is also helping to develop home grown talent by giving aspiring young cricketers the opportunity to showcase their skills.
The match between the St. Lucia Zouks and Barbados Tridents yesterday at the Beausejour Cricket Ground saw the home team lose their sixth straight game of the tournament. However, it highlighted the undeniable talent of the Caribbean’s new generation of aspiring cricketers like 19 year old St. Lucia Zouks fast bowler, Ray Jordan and 22 year old Barbados Tridents all-rounder, Jason Holder, who both gave stellar performances – Jordan taking his first professional wicket and Holder making 48 off 30 balls.
At the pre-match press conference ahead of their second home game this weekend, St. Lucia Zouks Head Coach, Matthew Maynard, lauded the young players in his team who continue to demonstrate tremendous talent on the pitch, he said; “The injuries we have had in the tournament have meant that our young players are getting opportunities to perform. Ray Jordan wasn’t even eligible to play at the start of the tournament, but he came in last night and performed magnificently.”
Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel Head Coach, Simon Helmot, also mentioned the fantastic experience young players are gaining by playing in the Limacol Caribbean Premier League, he said; “Tournaments like the CPL are providing up and coming cricketers with the chance to demonstrate their skills and passion for the game. When Twenty20 cricket first came about, we didn’t think the skills young players learn from the game would be adaptable for the longer format but, that is no longer the case as many players who are getting their first opportunities in Twenty20 are going on to be good test match players.”
St. Lucia Zouks all-rounder, Liam Sebastian, got his first taste of Twenty20 cricket in last night’s match and is looking to hone his talents in this format of the game, he said; “I have played lots of first class cricket throughout the Caribbean, but it was amazing to play in the CPL for the first time, especially in front the home crowd. I am looking forward to more opportunities to play and to make my team proud.”
The St. Lucia Zouks have back-to-back home games this weekend at the Beausejour Cricket Grounds against the Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel on Saturday at 4pm and the Antigua Hawksbills on Sunday at 4pm.