By Neto Baptiste
Enhance your skills by putting personal work. This is the advice former West Indies fast bowler and one of four knighted cricketers here, Sir Andy Roberts, gave to young cricketers hoping to command a permanent place at the top of the international game.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, Sir Andy said that although he was good enough to make the regional squad back in 1974, it was his dedication to self-growth and development that put him amongst the best of his generation.
“If you work hard enough, spend enough time trying to hone your skills and if you have the confidence, you will become a great player; it’s up to you. The amount of work I did in that first year and the amount of time that I stayed back when all the other second team players gone to the changing room, I stayed back and worked for half hour to 45 minutes bowling at one stump,” he said.
Sir Andy claimed 202 wickets in just 47 Tests while picking up 87 wickets in 56 One Day International (ODI) matches. He also featured for the Leeward Islands and picked up 889 First Class wickets in 228 appearances.
Sir Andy said he was driven by having to work twice as hard as players from other countries to get into the regional squad.
“We [Leeward Islands] produced far better cricketers than some of those who played from the bigger islands, because I think that people like Hubert Anthonyson, Sydney Walling, they had pedigree to be West Indies players but they were just never given the opportunity to,” he said.