Cricket

Kieron Pollard — a guide for young guns

Guiding force Captain Pollard and coach Simmons, who arrived in Visakhapatnam, have hinted at bringing back the specialists playing at their best positions.   | Photo Credit: K.R. DEEPAK

For someone who missed out three to four years of international cricket, the big-hitting all-rounder, Kieron Pollard, was the most unlikely cricketer to lead West Indies as it prepares to defend the T20 World Cup next year in Australia.

And, if his body-language is any hint, Pollard seems to be enjoying the role of a leader, giving a new direction to the team which is admired by many across the world.

Apparently, Cricket West Indies had few options than to look beyond Pollard as captain for the recent limited-overs series against Afghanistan and India.

Significantly it has helped young talents like Evin Lewis, Simron Hetmyer and Shai Hope to express themselves freely against India, with the last two slamming centuries to guide the team to a terrific win in the first ODI in Chennai.

The team arrived here on Monday for the second match scheduled on December 18.

The 32-year-old Pollard had missed out the 2019 World Cup when he was a reserve, has already hinted at bringing back the specialists playing at their best positions. Perhaps, that is what tempted Dwayne Bravo too to have a change of mind and announce his comeback.

Full backing

What will delight the young guns in this West Indies outfit is they have the unstinted backing of a captain whose philosophy is simple — need to give people time in everything we do.

“The young talent need experience and we as the management want to back these guys and see how far we can go because we have seen their talent and attitude and that’s some of the things we look at. So, exciting times for these youngsters,” he had said in Hyderabad before the start of the T20 series.

“It’s just a matter of trying to reach them and ease them into the world of international cricket, which we know is a very, very tough place. Again, the most important thing for the management is to have patience even while being honest with yourself,” Pollard explained.

“Sometimes, you need to have that umbrella over them and try and protect them from the vultures that’re out to take down their careers pretty quickly,” Pollard said.

Will Pollard see a turn-around in the fortunes of the West Indies as it embarks on the journey to defend the T20 World Cup in Australia next year? Only time will tell.

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Printable version | Oct 20, 2020 9:18:24 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/kieron-pollard-a-guide-for-young-guns/article30322758.ece

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