Trinidad and Tobago opening batsman Adrian Barath says his time at the High Performance Centre has helped him build confidence in his game and he is looking forward to making an impact next year to be considered for the West Indies World Cup team in Australia in 2015.
“I think I am obviously setting my goals, we have the World Cup in Australia, and I have good memories in Australia,” said Barath who made a century on Test debut Down Under in 2009. “My goal is to get into that West Indies team in 2015. I know where I have to perform in the WI Regional 50-Overs Series. I have done a lot of work on my game,” he said in an interview with WICB Media.
Barath added he had also increased his fitness through a regimen prescribed by WI strength and conditioning coach Shannon Lashley that he hoped would give him longevity in the sport.
“So I want to have a good regional series and take what I have been doing in this camp and apply it. It is not going to be easy because we have a lot of good West Indies players in terms of opening batsmen. So I am looking forward to next year hopefully getting back into the West Indies team once I perform well,” he said.
Besides his fitness, Barath specifically identified one other aspect of his cricket that his term at the HPC had improved.
“At the HPC, I have been hitting the ball a lot straighter and so on,” he said, adding that it was a privilege to be given an opportunity to be part of the camp.
Barath said the players enrolled at the camp train five days a week then play matches on the weekend, making it, “a really challenging camp and good for our young West Indies cricketers to use the opportunity to develop our game.”
Barath described it as “eating, breathing and sleeping cricket” in the only camp of the type offered in the Caribbean.
“The level of professionalism as a player is something I would say is new to me,” he said. “I would have probably liked it to happen before (I made my first West Indies team) but at the end of the day, I am given this opportunity and I am grateful. I played for West Indies before coming to this camp, so it is a different experience for me. Most players now would be graduating from here and going onto the West Indies team.”
Barath said working with coach Graham West has been beneficial.
“There has not been major changes to my game. It’s a matter of hitting a lot of balls, making subtle adjustments in my game like hitting the ball straighter and that has helped me build my confidence, to attempt to hit plenty balls in matches also,” he said.
Asked about the achievements of Windies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Indian superstar Sachin Tendulkar, Barath said he admired both players and wished them well in the current serieson the sub-continent.He specified Chanderpaul’s work ethic and organised lifestyle and Tendulkar’s humility as their most attractive qualities.
“Shiv is someone that every cricketer should look up to. He is a person who works very hard at his game. Just looking at his age, the way he bats, it is amazing to see. It’s like he gets better with age and that should motivate players.”