enthusiASTIC: Yannic Cariah

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Cariah learns from his 'fall'

By Roger Seepersad

Trinidad and Tobago leg-spinner Yannic Cariah wants to take his game to a higher level and said that being part of the West Indies Cricket Board's Sagicor High Performance Centre (HPC) will help him to do just that.

Cariah, who plays for CLICO Preysal, is among three T&T players named in the HPC intake for 2012-2013 and the 22-year-old is looking forward to the opportunity with great enthusiasm, especially after his inconsistent performances over the last year and a half.

The other two Trinidad and Tobago players in the HPC, which is based in Barbados, are Queen's Park Cricket Club batman Marlon Barclay and Cariah's Preysal teammate Kjorn Ottley.

"I just want to go up there and show them my talent and potential and what I've got. I just want to go out there and enjoy my cricket and give it 110 per cent in all the training sessions I have and take my game to a different level…an international level…I will be working towards that," Cariah told the Express on Wednesday night.

Cariah made his first class debut in 2011 but has only played five matches since, taking 13 wickets with a best of five for 46.

He played one regional match this year but was discarded from the team after spinner Sunil Narine came to the fore in the four-day game with 31 wickets in three games before leaving to take up his Indian Premier League contract with Kolkata Knight Riders.

But Cariah found it difficult to break back in after some ordinary performances for his club in the local Premier Division two-day competition.

Speaking about getting dropped and his poor season, Cariah said: "It was tough, I fell you know…I fell really hard, but if you don't fall how will you know what getting up is like.

"I take it as a learning experience and development for me. God never failed me so I left it in his hands so I overcome it. I am improving my game and taking my game to a different level and show people what I got and keep performing, making runs and taking wickets.

"The whole season has been a tough season for me. This is the first time I have been through this and it is a learning curve you know. If I had another chance I wouldn't take it back…we all learn and we all go through it so I won't take it back," he added.

"I am still fighting," Cariah insisted.

"Coming down to the end of the season, I had some good performances so I want to say it was a tough season but I kept learning and I am happy where I am right about now," he added.

Looking ahead, Cariah said making the High Performance Centre is just one step closer to achieving his dream of playing for the West Indies.

"Getting into the HPC...it is a great feeling because that is the next step closer for you to play for West Indies and that is the ultimate goal for me," he said.

"The year went from negative to positive so I am proud of that and I want to thank God and my family and my loved ones who supported me through the tough season," Cariah added.

He also spoke about being mentally tough and says he will be trying to get back his focus.

"Mentally I was out this year with everything that transpired throughout the year. It is just for me to keep working, keep my fitness at a high level and keep improving all the areas of my game…my batting, bowling and fielding and that is my main focus going to HPC," he concluded.

Cariah will be in action for Preysal in tonight's TTCB Premiership T20 semi-final at Guaracara Park from 7 p.m. against the winner of last night's quarter-final between First Citizens Clarke Road and Merry Boys.

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