After previous dismal tournaments the West Indies blind cricketers are hoping that 2014 will be their year.
The players leave the Caribbean on November 23 to participate in the fourth Blind Cricket World Cup being held in Cape Town, South Africa from November 25 to December 9.
John Reeves, captain of the Barbados blind cricket team and one of the five Barbadians in the line–up told Barbados TODAY that this year the players were of the quality that could bring the title back to the Caribbean. However, he stated that what was needed most was support from West Indians to encourage the players. Reeves said that presently many persons were not aware or cared about what was going on in the world of blind cricket.
“We are asking for the public to actually support the five Barbadians in the blind team. Even if they can’t make any of the actual games, just come out and watch the blind players practice on Mondays and Wednesdays at the Police Sports Club [Weymouth in Roebuck Street, the City]. That is all we need, a little support. We would really like to see the people coming out to see how the blind actually move around on the cricket field. How they bat, bowl, because Barbadians don’t know [anything] about blind cricket,” he said.
The other Barbadian players are Anthony Cummins, Ricardo Manning, KCi Ward–Ryan and Halden Forde. With at least two century-makers from last month’s WICB Regional Blind Cricket Tournament on the squad, and not discounting the bowling and fielding, Reeves said he was banking most on the strength of the batting to see the guys through.
The team is made up of players from Jamaica, Guyana and Barbados and players range from B1 to B3. Their biggest competition is expected to come from India which has a history of snatching victory from the Windies. Other participating teams included Pakistan, Sri Lanka, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and England.