Sport

A heck of a chance for Santokie's to shine

BY SANJAY MYERS Observer staff reporter myerss@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, March 23, 2014    

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The 2014 ICC Twenty20 (T20) World Cup offers left-arm swing bowler Krishmar Santokie a belated opportunity to shine in an international tournament for the West Indies.

The 29-year-old Jamaican, a leading performer in the now-defunct Caribbean T20 and more recently the star bowler in 2013 Caribbean Premier League tournament, has troubled regional batsmen with his swinging full-pitched deliveries and crafty slower balls from a low, slinging action.

Despite those successes, the former West Indies Under-15 player was perpetually overlooked by the regional selectors, apparently failing to convince them he could be a threat against international batsmen.

With the West Indies opening the defence of their T20 title versus India today in Dhaka and Santokie likely to be a key part of the team's bowling ambitions throughout the tournament, he expressed optimism at the role he could play.

"In Bangladesh I bring variation in those conditions and I'm known for yorkers and slower balls, plus the swing early up," he told the Jamaica Observer.

"I'm optimistic that I can get the job done once I have the chance to show it. The key is to ensure I deliver."

And he has been delivering.

Until recently, Santokie, who took 1-17 off three overs in his international debut in 2011, had inexplicably played in only a pair of T20s for the West Indies until this year. But recent masterly showings against the visiting duo of Ireland and England made it hard for him to be further ignored.

He followed with 3-24 off four overs in a warm-up game against England a few days ago.

The former Glenmuir High student, after striking on the door for years, is overjoyed he has finally pushed it open.

"It feels absolutely good [to be selected in the squad] because I've been doing well year-in year-out in a number of Caribbean T20 series. I just want to stay focused and stick to the basics and be positive," said the man who has taken nine wickets in five T20 Internationals at an average of 11.55.

In 47 T20 outings overall, he has grabbed 89 wickets at a cost of 11.66, including a best of 5-24.

See related story and pictures here : ‘We’re a team'

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