March 4, 2020, 5:09 p.m.
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – Barbados Pride all-rounder Kyle Mayers leapt to the top of the season’s batting aggregates with superb batting against Windward Islands Volcanoes in the sixth round of the West Indies Championship.
Mayers hit 140 – his second hundred of the season and his first-class career – and an unbeaten 62 against his former teammates on home soil at Kensington Oval to pave the way for the Pride to clinch a 127-run win.
The result for the Pride was highlighted by them becoming the first team to collect a maximum 24 points, since pace bowling bonus points was introduced into the Championship for the 2016-17 season.
Mayers has now carried his aggregate of runs to 579 from 11 innings in six matches for an average of 64.33. He is the only batsman this season to have struck more than one hundred.
Having spent the last four seasons with the Volcanoes, the rugged left-hander, son of former Barbados batsman Shirley Clarke, has come into the Pride batting line-up and played a pivotal role at six and has had to rescue them a few times already for the season.
He has now set his sights on finishing the season strong and scoring more than 1,000 runs – only long-serving Volcanoes left-hander Devon Smith achieved this feat in the West Indies domestic first-class competition.
Mayers spoke to CWI Media and reflected on his form and his future. . .
On his batting against Volcanoes:
This was very special for me. I always wanted to score a hundred at home from the beginning of the season and I finally got it.
On scoring two hundreds against Volcanoes this season:
Many people are saying the same thing. Going out there I don’t have it on my mind. It’s just a coincidence, but I am happy to have been able to have them.
On the reasons for his sound form this season:
The backing from support staff and the captain and all the players. They have told me to go out there and do me. Play my natural game and to the best of my ability.
On goals before the season:
At the beginning of the season, I started out as an all-rounder, so runs for me was a target of 500. I picked up an injury in the first game that has prevented me from bowling and so to continue as a batsman, I had to increase the runs target a bit, so right now I am thinking about trying to get 1,000 runs.
On batting higher in the order:
It does not matter to me. I just play my natural game. I try to play each ball on its merit and the situation of the game. It does not really matter where I bat – three, four, five, six or seven.
On batting under pressure this season:
It’s not very strange to me. Coming from the Volcanoes, it was a similar situation, where I had to put my head down and bat. With the batsmen not as consistent at the beginning of the season, but now they are coming together well and setting a nice foundation for me to come and play my natural game. Pressure situations, I am accustomed, even from club level, so it’s not a bother for me.
On how much confidence he has gained:
I am always confident. Even against Trinidad & Tobago Red Force, where I did not get many runs, people told me not to worry, but I kept telling them, I can’t score every innings or every game. I am always confident. If I am striking the ball well, I believe I have a chance to score runs.
On the lessons he has learnt this season:
Patience and sticking to the game plan.
On what he can do to improve consistency:
I think there is a lot I can learn. If I want to step up to the next level, there are a lot of things I have to learn. As players, we learn every day and every game. Patience is one for me. I think I can leave alone a few more balls, but I need to be more precise in my stroke-play and stick to my natural game.
On returning to bowling:
I think I should be able to bowl within the next two games. I have picked up a slight side strain, so I have been unable to bowl for the last few games. I have been bowling off and on in the nets to try to get back my rhythm and ease my way back into it, so within the next few games, I should be bowling.
On the remaining games in the Championship:
It will be tough, especially the game against the Guyana Jaguars. I really want to bowl against them.
Source: CWI Media