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Fired up

Swing bowler Green says he's ready for CPL challenge

BY SANJAY MYERS
Senior staff reporter
myerss@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, May 08, 2020

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JAMAICAN cricketer Derval Green says he is eager to show strides he has made since learning the hard way during his introductory campaign last year in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Last season, Green, a swing bowler and handy lower-order batsman, represented the two-time former champions Jamaica Tallawahs. They endured a miserable tournament, failing to reach the play-off stage after losing eight times and winning only twice.

“Definitely, with the experience that I would have gained playing last season, and the things I learned, I'm looking forward to playing the CPL this year, if given the chance,” Green told the Jamaica Observer during a telephone interview yesterday.

“Hopefully, all goes well and I'm picked up by a franchise for this year's CPL,” he added in reference to the player draft which is expected to be held later this month.

The 2020 CPL tournament is slated for August 19 to September 26, pending requisite approval, given the health risk posed by the novel coronavirus.

The 31-year-old pacer, though now a regular in regional four-day and 50-over cricket, only last year made his Twenty20 (T20) debut, playing in four of the Tallawahs' 10 preliminary matches.

He finished the tournament with three wickets, while conceding 126 runs at an unflattering economy rate of 10.5. With the bat, the usually cavalier player had even less of an impact, gathering 42 runs at a strike rate of 93.33.

“I was a lot more expensive than I usually am [as a bowler]. I failed with the bat; I could have offered a lot more.

“Then again, had things been different in terms of us taking opportunities maybe things would have gone better. Sometimes you can't be too hard on yourself because it's not like I didn't create any opportunities, [but] that's just the nature of the sport,” Green said, referring to the butterfingered catching and generally poor fielding which haunted the Tallawahs throughout their 2019 campaign.

“My first experience wasn't the best, but I've learned from it. I want to go out there and showcase my skill on another level… to show that 'yes, I'm very good at this level',” he reiterated.

After sitting out the team's first two games, Green was carted for 0-29 from two overs and 0-51 from four in respective home losses to St Lucia Zouks and Trinbago Knight Riders.

However, he rebounded creditably, claiming 1-23 in three overs in the home win over eventual champions Barbados Trident. He was left out for the Tallawahs' next four games before being given an opportunity in a dead rubber away to Guyana Amazon Warriors.

Though the Jamaican franchise closed out their campaign with an agonising eighth defeat, Green had another encouraging individual display, capturing 2-23 in three overs.

While conceding he had initially lacked levels of variety and awareness, he argued that bowling tweaks he made allowed him to end the competition with improved figures.

“The surfaces we played the CPL on last season [required bowlers to rely] more on yorkers or maybe a short ball here and there.

“For the first two games I was basically one dimensional in the sense that I was just trying to hit a length. You have to try and watch the batsman for as long as possible. You as the individual have to be able to adjust while the batsman is making his adjustment,” he told the Observer.

“You're not going to get it right all the time, but I can guarantee that most times if you watch the batsman then you can make a change. Batters these days play all kind of shots [and] sometimes they move early, so you as the bowler can make a change.

“That was a weak area for me that I've worked on. My third and fourth games, in terms of economy and how well I did, were a lot different from the first two in which I got a little tapping because I wasn't really watching the batters for as long as possible,” Green explained.

With the spread of the coronavirus crippling sports around the globe, a number of domestic cricket leagues have confirmed either changes to schedules or suspended all play, and declared winners of their respective trophies. Green harbours hope that the CPL T20 will be spared.

“On a whole I'd love for things to be back to normal as soon as possible. I, for one, definitely want to get back out there and play. If not selected in the draft I'd still want [to watch] the CPL, and people in the Caribbean and around the world also want to see it,” he said.


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