ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Antigua & Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne has hailed the remarkable debut of West Indies fast bowler Alzarri Joseph in the Indian Premier League.
Joseph bagged an IPL record best spell of six for 12 from 3.4 overs to mark his debut and fire Mumbai Indians to a 40-run victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad last Saturday at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad, India.
The 22-year-old Antiguan got a late call to be part of the tournament as replacement for injured New Zealand pacer Adam Milne and surpassed the previous best of six for 14 by Pakistani left-arm pacer Sohail Tanvir 11 years ago. He also became only the fourth bowler to take six wickets in an IPL match.
“Phenomenal,” said Browne. “A phenomenal performance from one of Antigua & Barbuda’s brightest, young stars.
“Congratulations to Alzarri Joseph on his historic and astonishing debut in the IPL series. . .Alzarri has proven that he has the talent and exceptional determination to succeed in the game of cricket.”
Browne added: “He has made all Antiguans and Barbudans proud and has set his sights on emulating the exploits of the greats like Sir Andy Roberts and Sir Curtly Ambrose.
“We are indeed very proud of his performance and anticipate greatness from him as the series progresses.”
Joseph is expected to be in the Mumbai side tomorrow when they face King’s XI Punjab, whose line-up includes talismanic West Indies left-handed opener Chris Gayle.
Meanwhile, former West Indies pace bowler Winston Benjamin has also heaped praise on his former pupil Joseph, praising both the player’s commitment and willingness to work hard, following his outstanding IPL debut.
Benjamin was quick to point to the player’s attitude and work ethic.
“It’s a misconception that West Indies bowlers just come and bowl fast. A lot of hard work goes into the making of a genuine fast bowler,” Benjamin said.
“Obviously, the more matches he played, the more he learnt, but he never shied away from advice or hard work. He has that attitude, and the passion for the game, not the money involved in it,” he added.
Joseph who was a part of the successful ICC Under-19 World Cup winning squad in 2016, made his debut for the senior team later that year but was later out of the game for several months due to injury.
“He was maybe a yard or two quicker but was all over the place. Besides, his action was more prone to injuries. So we made it shorter, a bit straighter and he doesn’t jump as wildly.” (SportsMax)