Crafty bowler hauls in special praise from coach Arthur
JAMAICA Tallawahs head coach Mickey Arthur was among many singing the praises of pacer Jerome Taylor after his expert bowling helped the franchise to three straight victories in the Kingston-based leg of the Limacol Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
Taylor, who missed last season’s inaugural CPL due to fitness concerns, grabbed nine wickets in the trio of matches at Sabina Park, and has accounted for 11 victims overall in the 2014 edition.
"Jerome has been outstanding; he really has [been]," Arthur said during a press conference after the Tallawahs downed Barbados Tridents on Sunday.
The 30-year-old West Indies fast bowler was particularly stingy against the Tridents, craftily mixing accurate slower balls, bouncers and yorkers in taking 2-11 off four overs. The highlight of his bowling came in the 18th over when he conceded only one run and took a wicket to effectively kill the Tridents’ run-chase.
Even the unique innings played by Pakistani Shoaib Malik — the only batsman on either side who looked fluent on a testing pitch — was ultimately put in the shade. The rampaging Malik blazed 81 not out from 43 balls, but he was shackled by Taylor’s searing pace and precision. Near the end, a virtually packed Sabina Park rocked and roared as the Tallawahs marched closer to victory.
"That was some of the best fast bowling you could ever wish to see. The execution was brilliant, and the pinpoint accuracy," the South African gushed, while jokingly agreeing to a comment that the Tallawahs should take Sabina Park to St Kitts, where they play next.
"I think Jerome’s second-tolast over went for one... and bowling to a batsman [Malik] who was playing extremely well and restricting him to one was fantastic," said the coach.
Truth be told, the St Elizabeth native was already in menacing form, snaring 4-18 and 3-14 in earlier home wins over Antigua Hawksbills and Guyana Amazon Warriors, respectively.
His spells evoked memories of his famous 5-11 which dismantled England in the second innings of the Test Crafty bowler hauls in special praise from coach Arthur
match at Sabina Park back in February of 2009. A long line of injury worries started that same year until a fruitful Test return against New Zealand months ago.
But a fit-again Taylor, speaking in a post-match television interview, was grateful to the heavens, while acknowledging the impact his family, teammates, fans and others have had on his return to competitive action.
"Thanks to the Almighty God for giving me strength and courage to pull it off. To my teammates, I must say thanks to them. They have been very supportive, the management staff as well. Thanks to the crowd for coming out and supporting us...they played a huge part in our success.
"I want to dedicate this one to my family, who travelled all the way from St Elizabeth to be here. They have played an integral part in my comeback to cricket," an openly-elated Taylor said.