Devon aiming for 800 runs
FRESH?OFF?his brilliant batting in the Regional Super50 cricket tournament, Windward Islands batsman Devon Smith is targeting the 800-run mark in the longer format of the game.
The experienced left-hander, who was the leading batsman in the One-Day format with 348 runs at an impressive average of 58 runs per innings, is now preparing for the semi-finals of the Regional 4-Day Tournament against Barbados in Dominica from May 2 to 5.
He has also been the leading run-scorer in this tournament with 682 runs at an average of 85.25 runs per innings. He has three centuries, including a top score of 150 not out against Barbados at Kensington Oval.
Earlier this season, he surpassed 9 000 runs in first-class cricket and has now scored 22 centuries.
“I’m trying to make up for last year when I got a hundred in the first match and didn’t score over 200 runs. That was disappointing. I set my goal – I put it at 800 runs in the four-day tournament and I’m looking for five centuries, so I would say I’m on my way there,” the 31-year-old told WICB Media.
“There is still a lot to be done. We want to win the four-day tournament to add to the One-Day tournament. I am playing really well this year, and that’s mainly because I decided to buckle down and spend more time at the crease.
“The key is always to get yourself ‘in’ first and then let your natural game flow after that. I have been doing that all season and the scores have been coming, so that is quite satisfying for me.”
Smith said the role of an opener was to always give the team a solid base.
“I have been around at this level for a while now and I’m expected to be a team leader and lead from the front. I try to bat as long as possible and let the others bat around me.
“You won’t get going everyday, but when you get in, you have to look to capitalize and I’m happy I have been able to do that this season in both the One-Day matches and the four-day matches.”
Smith was a member of the team when the Windwards won the regional limited-overs tournament 13 years ago under the captaincy of all-rounder Rawl Lewis.
He said that win, as well as Sunday night’s triumph over the Combined Campuses & Colleges at?Kensington Oval, was “wonderful” for Windward Islands cricket.
“As a youngster back then, I really enjoyed it and I could see the youngsters coming in here, really enjoyed it,” he said.
“We really deserve it. We have played some really good cricket throughout the season. We played our best game in the semi-finals when we beat Jamaica and that gave us the momentum for the final.”