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Coach preaches calm as champs Windward Islands prepare for Super50
Published on January 29, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Head coach of the Windward Islands, Ian Allen, is calming his troops ahead of battle in the NAGICO Super50 tournament which gets going on Thursday, January 30.

The defending champions will expect a stern examination from the other Zone A teams – Guyana, Jamaica and Ireland – in a bid to retain the Clive Lloyd Trophy. Their first order of business will be the opening match against Jamaica on Thursday at Queen's Park Oval. First ball is 2 pm/1 pm Jamaica Time.

“All tournaments are a challenge especially when you are defending champions but I think we’re trying to be as calm as possible, just erase any added pressure that may come between our game and just stay focussed as much as possible and take one game at a time,” Allen said.

“It’s a format where you can't be too relaxed because you're just guaranteed basically three games so we’ll just take it from there.”

Allen, a former West Indies seam bowler believes his team’s preparation for the tournament has gone well. It was helped by the fact the side arrived in Trinidad early to play warm-up matches in order to get acclimatised to the conditions.

The long-standing coach is also backing his international players to deliver for the team, similar to last season, and singled out top-order batsmen Johnson Charles and Andre Fletcher as two team leaders.

“When the international players comes back into your unit at the regional level, you expect them to bring a lot to the team, not just for their experience but also to dominate the regional tournament and I'm just hoping that ‘Johno’ has a great tournament this year as a lot of responsibility will fall on him,” Allen said.

“Fletcher has been showing signs of improvement and I also expect a lot from him. He has been given the added responsibility of vice captain and we know he can deliver.”

The NAGICO Super50 tournament will run from January 30 to February 15 and will be broadcast live on ESPN for television viewers and on Caribbean Super Station radio. Matches at Queen’s Park Oval will be day/night fixtures while matches at Shaw Park, Tobago will be day games.

The champions will take home the Clive Lloyd Trophy – named in honour of the legendary captain of the 1975 and 1979 World Cup winning teams.
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