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Gibson expects Narine to shine

Craig Cozier

Gibson expects Narine to shine

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West Indies head coach Ottis Gibson is confident that emerging spin talent Sunil Narine can be a major player during the two Tests against Bangladesh over the next few weeks.
“The wickets in Bangladesh will suit him; there will be some assistance there for him. When the ball is spinning, he’s at his best,” Gibson said on the eve of the team’s departure for the five-week tour.
“He’s a match-winner, certainly in the shorter format so far, and we believe he’ll be a match-winner in the longer format as well.”
The 24-year-old Narine is less than a year into his international career, his reputation having initially been made in Twenty20 tournaments for Trinidad and Tobago before his big-money move to the Indian Premier League last April, where he was an integral part of Koltaka Knight Riders’ first-ever title.
While his Twenty20 and One-Day figures are immaculate, his numbers in three Tests have been less remarkable, going wicketless on debut in England last May before grabbing 12 wickets in the two home Tests against New Zealand in the summer.
But Gibson is sure that the Trinidadian’s reputation will grow as he settles into the format.
“He’s a very fast learner. When he played his first Test match, it was on the back of very limited first-class cricket,” the coach said.
“Bowling in One-Day and T20 cricket is very different to bowling in Test match cricket and he had to learn how to bowl in Test match cricket and how to try and get wickets.
“England was an alien environment for him. He wasn’t at his most comfortable. When we came back to the Caribbean, we saw the real Narine.”