KINGSTON – Jamaica Under-19 captain, Michael Frew, a member of the victorious West Indies Under-19 team in Bangladesh, has listed teamwork as the main reason behind their historic ICC Under-19 World Cup triumph.
The West Indies, led by Man-of-the-Match Leeward Islands batsman, Keacy Carty, who scored an unbeaten 52, defeated title-favourites and previously unbeaten India by five wickets in the final yesterday in Bangladesh.
“It was definitely, team performance,” off-spinning all-rounder Frew told The Gleaner. “It wasn’t one person who really carried the team. Everyone chipped in at the right time.
“Our opening bowlers, again, gave us a good start with the new ball and the bowlers in the middle came and finished the job.
“In the batting we knew we had a lot of balls and the guys batted patiently,” he added.
The triumph, which was wrapped up with three balls to spare, after the West Indies scored 146 for five in response to 145 made by the Indians, represented the first time the regional outfit was lifting the title.
The previous best performance was a second place finish in 2004, when the West Indies, led then by current international wicketkeeper, Denesh Ramdin, lost to Pakistan in the final, also in Bangladesh.
Fast bowlers – the impressive Alzzarri Joseph of the Leewards and Ryan John of the Windward Islands – spearheaded the West Indies bowling performance with three for 39 and John, three
for 38, respectively.
“Leading up to the final we were winning matches so our confidence was at a pretty good level,” Frew said.
“However, we knew that India was a good team and didn’t take anything for granted.”
Guided by captain Shimron Hetmyer of Guyana, the West Indies, after going down to England in their opening match, rebounded to defeat Fiji and Zimbabwe in their subsequent group fixtures.
They then defeated long-standing nemesis, Pakistan, who also knocked them out of the tournament in 2014, in the quarter-finals, before getting the better of Bangladesh in the semi-finals.
One of three Jamaicans in the West Indies squad along with fast bowler Odean Smith and batsman Shahid Crooks, Frew, also said he hoped the win would make the people of the Caribbean happy.
“I hope it has made them proud,” he said. “We wanted to do this for the people of the Caribbean, including our family and our friends.”