Former international cricketer, Winston Benjamin, has called for patience where it pertains to the development of young Antiguan fast bowler, Alzarri Joseph.
His call comes as the Windies prepare to host India for two One Day Internationals here at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground located at North Sound.
The young pacer, who rose to fame following his exploits with the region’s under-19 squad back in 2016 when they won the ICC Under-19 title, proved quite expensive in game 2 of the ongoing series with 73 runs coming from his eight overs and an economy rate of 9.12 per over.
According to Benjamin, a former Windies player, Joseph — unlike many of his peers who are playing at that level — did not have the benefit of a fully functioning system and is still learning his craft.
“People have to understand that Alzarri is a youngster coming up and who doesn’t have a lot of first class [experience] and he is playing against probably the best team in the world. I think what needs to happen is that we need to accept the fact that he has to be trained now at the top whereas he should have learnt it before he got to the top,” he said.
Benjamin, who claimed 100 wickets in 85 ODIs, also urges the young cricketers representing the Windies to work harder at their craft and represent the region with pride whenever they wear the team’s maroon colours.
His plea comes after comments he heard from an Indian commentator following a knock of 103 off 104 deliveries by India’s Rajinkya Rahane in the second ODI played in Trinidad.
“It begs you to just put your hands in the air and say enough is enough. After the game on Sunday, one of the commentators said of Rajinkya Rahane’s century that he didn’t make it against anybody so there is no need to make a big hoorah about [Sunday’s] hundred and that hurt me to the core where somebody could have said that about West Indies cricket,” Benjamin said.
The Windies play India in the first of two matches here on Friday and then on Sunday. Matches are scheduled to start at 9 am on both days.