Head coach, Emmerson Trotman, says Barbados Pride are extremely optimistic ahead of today’s big clash against bitter rivals Trinidad and Tobago Red Force, as they seek to haul themselves back into the running in the Regional Four-Day Championship.
Pride, who have finished second for the last three seasons, have underperformed this season with just one win in six rounds of the first class tournament.
However, speaking to Barbados TODAY in a pre-match telephone interview, Trotman said he was pleased with the improvements shown in the last game despite the team’s inability to pull off victory against Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the last round.
“The boys in the camp are very confident. They batted well in the last game and that was an area of concern for me and the boys have seemed to get that together, so we are quite confident,” an upbeat Trotman said.
“They are executing as they should and sticking to the training and practice sessions. The boys are positive.Trinidad is a good side. They have been under a little bit of pressure at the moment so we would look to take that advantage.”
He continued: “Tomorrow’s game is very important. I mean every game that we play is a big match considering the fact that we are hunting down points at the moment. We are playing on a wicket that is pretty flat so I expect the batsmen to go out there and put the runs on the board.
“I want us to be consistent and execute very well so that we can beat Trinidad of course.”
When the two teams met in the first round at Kensington Oval earlier in the season, the visitors dominated the contest but Pride managed to hold on for a draw.
The game appeared to set the tone for Pride’s season and they have struggled badly, losing twice and drawing twice, and currently lie one from bottom of the six-team standings.
With the batting at fault in previous games, Trotman said they would be looking to make the most of the surface at the Brian Lara Stadium.
“I reminded the boys of the errors that they were making in terms of the bat and how to manage themselves under pressure and to have awareness in such situations and try not to lose wickets in pairs,” he pointed out.
“The plan really is to bat first and try to score in excess of 400 runs and we are, most importantly, looking to bat once. If we can achieve that it would be a great start.”
In the last game against Hurricanes, Pride turned in their best performance of the season, piling up 394 in their first innings behind opener Shayne Moseley’s maiden hundred, and then declaring at 163 for four in their second innings.
They set the home side 312 for victory but Devon Thomas struck a century to deny Barbados honours.
Trotman said situation awareness had cost them the match.
“They boys batted well and they bowled well but the disappointment comes with the awareness to some situations,” he explained.
“We lost the first session due to rain but there was an area when they should have scored much faster because we batted for one hour. They were instructed to go out there and get runs on the board fast but unfortunately the boys didn’t bat as fast as they should and we had a problem.”
The bowling department has been an area of concern for Trotman but he believes with the inclusion of Antiguan leg spinner Hayden Walsh, that Pride will do much more damage with the ball.
“We brought in another spinner and he has done well under coach Hendy Bryan. In his first back he picked up six for ,” he stressed.
“I think he is a great addition to the squad seeing that right now he is extremely confident and that attitude and momentum suits well for the team.”
SQUAD – Shamarh Brooks (captain), Anthony Alleyne, Jonathan Carter,
Justin Greaves, Keon Harding,
Aaron Jones, Shayne Moseley,
Mario Rampersaud, Shamar Springer, Kevin Stoute, Jomel Warrican,
Hayden Walsh Jr, Kenroy Williams.