By Neto Baptiste
Leeward Islands and Antigua and Barbuda all-rounder, Kofi James, is set to make his debut in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
The Liberta Blackhawks player was selected by the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in the 14th round of the recently held draft and will be the only Antiguan on the team’s roster.
James said he was confident of being drafted following good performances in a number of regional competitions.
“I thought I had a good year leading up to the CPL so I was anticipating a pick so I was eager and very excited to hear the news.
“I just expect to go and perform to the best of my ability, showcase my talent, get some exposure so the world knows who Kofi James is and just go and make the 11 because making the 11 will give me more opportunities than if I am on the bench, so I have to work hard to get into the 11,” he said.
James is joined in the CPL by fellow Antiguans Rahkeem Cornwall, who will play for the Barbados Royans, Alzarri Joseph, who will play for the St Lucia Kings, and Hayden Walsh Jr who will play for the Jamaica Tallawahs.
James credited tournaments like the locally contested Cool & Smooth T20 for helping to prepare him for what’s ahead.
“I went to the Dominica T10 and that was a different experience. I played in the Cool & Smooth with international and other regional players coming in also, so those leagues helped me to prepare for things I’ve never seen or faced before so, putting all of that together, I would say the other leagues really helped, … and gave me a rhythm coming into the CPL,” he said.
James made his first class debut in February 2022 against Guyana in Port of Spain and has since scored a total of 206 runs at an average 26.00. He has a highest of 107. James has also claimed six wickets for 260 runs.
The 2023 CPL will start on August 16 in St Lucia and will feature matches in St Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, and Guyana with the final taking place at the National Stadium, Providence, on September 24.
Trinbago Knight Riders: Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Nicholas Pooran, Rilee Rossouw, Akeal Hosein, Noor Ahmad, Martin Guptill, Jayden Seales, Matheesha Pathirana, Mark Deyal, Chadwick Walton, Terrance Hinds, Kadeem Alleyne, Jaden Carmichael
Barbados Royals: Rovman Powell, Jason Holder, Kyle Mayers, Maheesh Theekshana, Rassie van der Dussen, Alick Athanaze, Obed McCoy, Kevin Wickham, Roelof van der Merwe, Akeem Jordan, Rahkeem Cornwall, Donovan Ferreira, Justin Greaves, Joshua Bishop, Nyeem Young, Rivaldo Clarke, Ramon Simmonds
St Kitts and Nevis Patriots: Evin Lewis, Andre Fletcher, Shrefane Rutherford, Dominic Drakes, Sheldon Cottrell, George Linde, Yannic Cariah, Oshane Thomas, Corbin Bosch, Dewald Brevis, Jyd Goolie, Izharulhaq Naveed, Kofi James, Joshua da Silva, Ashmead Nedd, Johann Layne
St Lucia Kings: Faf du Plessis, Johnson Charles, Dasun Shanaka, Alzarri Joseph, Roston Chase, Jair McAllister, Sikandar Raza, Peter Hatzoglou, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Roshon Primus, Jeavor Royal, Sadrack Descarte, Khary Pierre, Leonardo Julien, Matthew Forde, Kimani Melius, McKenny Clarke
Guyana Amazon Warriors: Imran Tahir, Shimron Hetmyer, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Odean Smith, Romario Shepherd, Azam Khan, Shai Hope, Gudakesh Motie, Dwaine Pretorius, Kevlon Anderson, Kevin Sinclair, Keemo Paul, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Ronsford Beaton, Matthew Nandu, Junior Sinclair
Jamaica Tallawahs: Imad Wasim, Brandon King, Fabian Allen, Mohammad Amir, Naveen-ul-Haq, Chris Green, Jermaine Blackwood, Shamarh Brooks, Hayden Walsh Jr, Raymon Reifer, Amir Jangoo, Steven Taylor, Shamar Springer, Nicholson Gordon, Kirk McKenzie, Joshua James