Cariah is a 30-year-old legspin-bowling allrounder who has bolted into West Indies’ squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup in Australia, for which they first need to qualify by playing against Scotland, Zimbabwe and Ireland in the opening round in Hobart.
Tell me about his recent form
In his first international outing, Cariah showed fairly good control with the ball, picking up 1 for 49 in nine overs, playing a part in West Indies’ only ODI victory of their recent home summer.
He also led the West Indies Emerging team to their maiden Super 50 title in December 2019. In the final against Leeward Islands, Cariah made 34 and followed it up with figures of 5-1-8-3, including the wickets of Amir Jangoo, Keacy Carty and Jahmar Hamilton. Cariah established his leadership qualities with that victory and with an eye towards grooming future leaders, West Indies chief selector Desmond Haynes appointed him as captain of the WICB XI against the Bangladeshis.
Walsh Jr was integrated into the West Indies set-up in 2019 after he had emerged as the top wicket-taker in the CPL that year. His star continued to rise, even outside the Caribbean, when he was brought in by Rajasthan Royals to be a net bowler, but he appeared to hit his ceiling quickly. In the most recent home season, he struggled for control and often let the opposition batters hit with the wind. So, the selectors wanted something different and that is Cariah. Having not played a T20 in more than four years, and having never played T20Is, he is a bit of a novelty in West Indies’ attack.
You’re right. He isn’t contracted to the CPL presently, but that hasn’t stopped the selectors from taking a punt on him. They will hope, that despite the big step up, he can draw on the experience that has brought him here, including bowling in tandem with Akeal Hosein, West Indies’ frontline T20I spinner, at Queen’s Park Cricket Club in Trinidad.
What they said…
“I think the intensity… The speed of the game and opponents change, but the game remains the same. You still have to watch the ball and play the ball. Still have to bowl good lengths, still have to understand the conditions and opponents. I think it’s just the intensity – the bowlers might hit their mark more often than not, but you still have to play the same. It’s still the same process. I think it’s just the intensity.”
Yannic Cariah on the major differences between regional and international cricket after scoring a fifty against New Zealand.
“It’s a bit unfortunate that Yannic is not playing in the CPL, but we have no control over who will select whom for the CPL competition. We were very impressed with the games that we’ve selected him, starting with the A team. He bowled very well and then we gave him a chance to play against New Zealand in the 50-over competition. We were very impressed by him. One thing a lot of people might not be aware of is, yes even though he’s bowling well, we’ve got a lot of respect for his batting. We think he’s a guy who can make runs for us as well.”
Desmond Haynes, West Indies lead selector, likes what he has seen of Cariah