CPL 2022: “I focus on how setting up an innings and just being out in the crease for as long as possible”; Shimron Hetmyer looks forward to do the best for GAW

No team has lost as many finals as Guyana.  They were runners-up in the Caribbean Premier League five times and lost to Jamaica Tallawahs (2013 and 2016), Barbados Tridents (2014 and 2019) and Trinbago Knight Riders (2018).

However, the Guyana Amazon Warriors, who have suffered five painful defeats, are hoping that the 2022 tournament will be a special one.

After a stunning campaign for the Warriors in 2019 with 11 wins in a row, the lone loss came in the final against Barbados. This season, The prospect of Guyana hosting the CPL final for the first time has raised the expectations of the fans.

In an interview with virtual media interaction, Shimron Hetmyer, Amazon Warriors’ new captain showed his full confidence for winning the title this year.

“I actually see it as a challenge and I relish challenges,” Hetmyer said during a virtual media interaction.

“Want to really perform and do the best for my team because I know once I do half of my best or even my best, we will get there to a decent score more times than not. So, it’s really for me to focus on how I go about doing that and how I go about setting up an innings and just being out in the crease for as long as possible and not thinking too far ahead to the World Cup.

“I’m very excited, actually, it [captaincy] is something I was really looking forward to, to be honest. It’s something that I could learn a lot from, in terms of managing my innings, how to look after the team and be a little bit more of a team player than just trying to basically hit sixes and fours. I’m trying to do as much as I can in terms of being the captain and trying to help out as much as I can and just being there for the team.”

This will be Hetmyer’s first taste of captaincy in the CPL but In 2016, Hetmyer captained West Indies to the Under-19 World Cup title in Bangladesh.

“It [Under-19 captaincy experience] will help quite a lot; 2016 was quite a while [ago],” Hetmyer said. “But I guess from then it has helped me in some way because now I know I’d have done it before and just need to tap into that knowledge to find a way to get stuff done and to find a way to actually cross the line more times than not.”

Hetmyer is also open to taking inputs and suggestions from the other members in the squad.

“There’s a lot of guys there that are actually experienced and it helps in terms of field placement, see where the guys are and move them into specific angles and stuff like that.

“There’s also Keemo [Paul] who is a friend of mine who helps me as well. [Romario] Shepherd, Colin [Ingram]. Basically, the entire team will come over to me and actually lend some advice in terms of what they’re thinking and even the bowlers will come and try to basically pick my brain, in terms of what I would want them to do, which is really nice. It’s always good to know that there’s guys you could always go to and find out what they’re thinking and then they could help you in terms of field setting and who is the bowler at the specific time to make sure that everything goes smoothly.”

Hetmyer hinted that lower-order muscle in the form of Romario Shepherd and Odean Smith could allow him to bat higher rather than West Indies and other T20 franchises.

“It [batting position] is to be decided, to be honest. It’s mainly about the balance of the team,” Hetmyer said. “In this team, I think it would be much easier for me to bat a little bit higher because of the fact that we have so much power down towards the end and being in a team like that you wouldn’t really want to disrupt the powerplay and at the end; it’s about trying to stick around as the captain and as a batter of the team and get as much as I can out of the team.”

Romario Shepherd and kemo Paul have had to deal with injuries during West Indies’ recent international home season, but Hetmyer backed them to work their way back into the CPL and do the job for Amazon Warriors.

“I think injuries would’ve done quite a lot,” he said. “They would’ve gotten injured during the West Indies series against India – both of them got injured. But, as it is, the physio is doing a wonderful job taking care of [players] and managing the workload and stuff. So, I think coming into the CPL they would be much better and much stronger.”

Guyana Amazon Warriors squad: Shimron Hetmyer, Odean Smith, Romari Shepherd, Keemo Paul, Imran Tahir, Gudakesh Motie, Colin Ingram, Paul Stirling, Jermaine Blackwood, Ronsford Beaton, Shai Hope, Verasammy Permaul, Chandrapaul Hemrhami, Tabrain Hemchraj, Tabrain Hemrias Jr.  Sinclair, Matthew Nandu.

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