By Neto Baptiste
West Indies leg-spinner, Hayden Walsh Jr is relishing a return to the Barbados Tridents later this year as they seek to defend their 2019 Caribbean Premier League (CPL) title.
Walsh, who finished last year’s tournament as the wicket-taker after claiming 22 victims in nine matches, will also be seeking to defend his bowling title. The Antiguan said, however, that he enjoys playing for the Barbados franchise which is led by former West Indies captain, Jason Holder.
“I really enjoyed the Tridents setup last year with the whole coaching staff and the team and everyone just jelled together and even in the times where we looked as if we were going to go out quite miserably we still stuck together and fight it out to win the championship. So I think that was the most rewarding part of being part of the setup,” he said.
Walsh Jr claimed his 22 wickets in just 33.4 overs at an economy rate of 8.29 runs per wicket. He gave up 279 runs in the process and had one five-wicket haul, taking five wickets for 19 runs from his four overs against the Trinbago Knight Riders.
The USVI-born, Antigua-raised cricketer, partly credits Tridents and West Indies senior men’s coach, Phil Simmons for his success thus far.
“He’s like a father and I’d say he’s like a father-coach. He’s stern when he needs to be stern, he jokes around when it’s time to joke around and when things are not right he puts them into place, so it’s like when your parents or father sees things are out of place and they would put them in place. I think he has been a real father figure for all of us, even the big stars and stuff, so I really enjoy playing under him,” he said.
The Caribbean Premier League is slated to run from August 19 to September 26 this year. Organisers of T20 competition, in their latest statement, have said that they are keen on going ahead as per the original schedule but have also kept other options open due to the coronavirus.