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Title: Coach Stoute expects BCL to perform well despite losing a couple young players - BCA Div. 1 preview 2009

Author: Elvis Howard

Date Submitted: 2009-05-02

Keywords: Dave Clarke, Kevin McClean, Sylvan Stoute, Sean Armstrong

First Division - A look at teams in the 2009 BCA Division 1 championship

Bridgetown, Barbados, May 2 (www.bcacricket.org) -

TEAM: BRC BCL.

Home ground: Blenheim ‘A’.

Captain: To be announced.

Coach: Sylvan Stoute.

Manager: To be announced.

Position last season: 5th in Zone ‘B’ – 45 points.

Matches Played: 9: Won: 1; Lost: 2; Draw: 5; No-decisions: 1.

Number of players used: 22.

Highest Total: 306 all out (1st Innings) v Carlton at Blenheim ‘A’ (Series 5).

Lowest Total: 102 all out (1st Innings) v St. Catherine at Blenheim ‘A’ (Series 7).

Last title: 1973.

IN:

OUT: Christopher Yearwood (England), Roger Williams.

It might be a surprise that BCL continue to attract a good crop of cricketers to Blenheim. With a blend of youth and experience they have improved somewhat in the last two seasons.

The fact that they drew five matches last season is very encouraging for them. The next step will be to win. Their only victory came by virtue of default, as BDFSP were a no-show at Paragon in the eighth series of matches.

However, they have become a more settled unit and less chopping and changing seems to be a thing of the past as coach Sylvan Stoute has been able to get the chemistry right.

While veterans Dave Clarke and Sean Armstrong struggled with the bat, the young brigade came to the rescue. Christopher Yearwood (406) and Krisnan Hurdle (290) runs, both notched up maiden Division 1 hundreds and were among the leading batsmen.

Former Barbados under-19 batsman Roger Williams got 336 runs in his first year with the club. However, he has parted ways and will be turning out for Police - a sad loss for BCL.

Yearwood will miss the early part of the season because of contractual arrangement in England.

Once more there will be a heavy diet of spin, especially from Clarke who had 31 wickets - the most for his side. He will get support from fellow off-spinner Michael Agard jnr, who played at the tailend of the season last year.

Kevin McClean of first-class fame with Combined Campuses & Colleges and who also played for West Indies ‘A’ against England earlier in the year will spearhead the fast bowling attack.

SYLVAN STOUTE (COACH) - “I expect the BCL to perform well. We are the only one with the exception of the schoolboys (Barbados Youth) and BDFSP who don’t have an overseas player. I think these guys have the quality in the batsmanship to do well. What they need to do is get mentally prepared and focussed where occupying the crease becomes vitally important,” he said.

“To stay in the Division 1 is definitely a challenge. I carry the whole Mitchie Hewitt dream with me that BCL means a lot more than just a team for me. BCL has been unfortunate that very good players have come and they have migrated to other clubs. They have made other clubs and better than they used to be.

My intentions this year is to make things at the club so good that we can hold a good cadre of players who would form the nucleus of a good BCL team in years to come,” Stoute said.

“Ryan Nurse has being practising with us. He has stated his intention to play with us. All we are waiting for is his transfer form to come to us,” he said.

ON LAST YEAR’S FORMAT

“I thought that was strange. After the two I thought that there would have been play-offs to indicate who would have been where realizing that they had zones,” Stoute said.

ON PROMOTION/ DEMOTION

“ I don’t support it. It has nothing to do with team BCL. It is just a cricketing view. I said to Springer (Henderson Springer - Director of Coaching at the BCA), to me it is ironic that you can have coaches being put into clubs to better the standard of cricket and have not been giving the coaches the chance to bring the standard of cricket anywhere and bang you gone and put a promotion/demotion system in place.

“I think it is going to be fatal to our cricket in Barbados. Other people see the optimistic side and I am very proud for them. I don’t see it, I just don’t. Ten is no magic number and I think Barbados should be proud to state they have 16 First division teams. What we need to do is to get the calibre of coaches to bring the teams up to scratch. sIf the BCA is going to invest money in doing that, that investment should have been given the time,” Stoute said.

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