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Giant step

Philip Hackett

Giant step

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While the rain yesterday may have put a damper on the Sagicor Super Cup 50-over contest between YMPC and Banks at Wildey, the interest sparked by the debut of West Indies women’s cricketer Shaquana Quintyne at the highest level of domestic cricket remained a major point of interest within cricket circles, especially at Beckles Road.
With only 11 overs possible before rain caused the match to be abandoned, the 17-year-old Graydon Sealy Secondary School student never got the opportunity to bat or bowl but was still pleased about her selection and being part of history.
“There will be other opportunities to play,” the soft-spoken leg-spinning all-rounder said as she shrugged off her disappointment even as she considered the enormous step she has taken.
“I think it is a great experience and I can only get better from here. It’s a lot of pressure because I know that the guys are going to come hard at me but I also set a plan that I will come hard at them also.
“I am just going to use different variations in my bowling,” Quintyne told SUNSPORT shortly after the match was abandoned because of wet conditions.
In the 11 overs of play possible, Banks reached 33 for two.
“I just came off the West Indies women’s tour and I think that helped prepare me to come here,” Quintyne said. “I am just taking it step by step. It’s been a lot of great experiences that I have had and playing one of the top teams in the world, England, and dominating against them, it felt great.”
Known locally and in the international arena for her accurate leg spin bowling, Quintyne also put in a couple solid batting performances for West Indies women.
While that may have surprised many fans, the talented all-rounder, who has taken 21 wickets in 20 One-Day Internationals and 20 wickets in 17 Twenty20s, is quite confident about her batting ability.
“I think I am more a batsman than a bowler but I made the team as a bowler so I will just grasp both,” she said.
Elvis Howard, who is in charge of the cricket programme at Graydon Sealy Secondary, also thinks highly of her batting but was not quite prepared to label her a batting all-rounder.
“She is the best person to determine that. She is a very good all-round cricketer. If she figures that her strength is in batting, in the final analysis she would have to determine that. At this point, for me it is even,” Howard said.
West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Smith, who has also had a hand in her development, sees Quintyne’s selection as a positive move and explained how events unfolded in the days prior to the contest against Banks.
“I think it is a step going forward. I brought her here the other day to practise. I had to go on and leave her so she said she would stay on and bowl at the guys and see how it goes,” he said.
“I came back and heard everyone saying, ‘We can’t get her off the square and if it’s possible for us to get her to play on Saturday’. I told them it’s only a question to be asked. The BCA said okay, so we just went forward with it.”
“She has been doing a lot of good things for the women’s West Indies team so it’s just to give her some experience against playing tougher opposition,” he added.
YMPC captain Francois Hurley was among those expressing respect for Quintyne’s ability.