By Neto Baptiste
Coach of the West Indies women’s cricket team, Courtney Walsh, is hopeful that Antigua’s Shawnisha Hector could rebound from an untimely injury and continues to make progress, adding that once fit, the all-rounder could impress in the regional competition slated for Guyana in June.
“I was pleased with how she was coming along, but I think she got injured just before I left here, that was the report I got, so I am looking to see if she is going to be in the regional set-up, if she is fit enough because that would be her next step now to see how she does in that, but unfortunately for her, she got injured at the wrong time but hopefully once everything works out well for her she can play regional in Guyana, and we could have another good look at her but potential-wise she has got what we are looking at,” he said.
Hector was omitted from the senior women’s team ahead of their 2022 World Cup campaign earlier this year with Walsh suggesting then that the player had some work to do.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show at the time, Walsh said there are a number of young players set to burnt onto the scene this year, many of whom he suspects will feature in the regional under-19 tournament.
“There are a couple of youngsters out there we had invited to the camp, and some of them are looking to take part in the under-19s later on this year, and hopefully go to the under-19 World Cup, and they are very enthusiastic players and I am really enthused with what I have seen from them. They want to play cricket and so the more chances they get to play is the more they will improve, and I am sure there are others we didn’t get the chance to see, but the level of enthusiasm shown by these players is great. I am just eager to see them play and to get our under-19 competition going and our regional team going,” the coach said.
Walsh said the development of young talent is important as the region continues to rely heavily on the more seasoned veterans at the highest level.
“We have the experienced players that we have always been relying on, but although a couple of players had sort of put their hands up throughout the qualifiers and the tournament, we lacked a little bit of consistency with that but one of my main concerns is that if all of the senior players leave at once we are going to have a big void so we need to start building around that so we could have some depth in our squad, and create a lot more competition within the squad. I believe if you have people vying for the space and challenging each other, and even if someone gets injured, you know you have a solid replacement and that is the sort of thing you want to put in place so in the last couple of tours, yes, it’s’ more or less the same set of players who have put their hands up,” he said.
Walsh, who claimed 519 wickets in 132 Tests, and another 227 in 205 ODIs, said he is anticipating the return of the regional competition following a two-year absence due to the Covid-19 pandemic.