Stafanie Taylor looks forward to World Cup Qualifier 2011
ICC Media Release
Tue, Nov 1, 2011 3:15 PM
ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year, Stafanie Taylor is confident about her West Indies team's chances in the upcoming ICC Women's World Cup Qualifier to be staged in Bangladesh from 14-26 November in Dhaka. Taylor believes the preparation of the side has been 'perfect' and it will be confident going into the competition.
West Indies plays its first game in the tournament against Ireland on 14 November. "We've been preparing well doing both fitness and psychology training and I feel we have got a good grounding ahead of Dhaka. The girls are looking well and our fitness has definitely improved which was key goal for us ahead of this tour. We need to make sure we are fully prepared for this event because we all want to qualify for the ICC Women's World Cup. The camp we've been participating in for the last week and a half has definitely been a great confident booster," said Taylor.
West Indies is in Group B alongside Pakistan, Ireland, Japan and host Bangladesh in the 10-team event. Taylor believes the side can draw from the knowledge of having played Ireland and Pakistan previously.
"We faced Ireland and Pakistan at the Women's Cricket Challenge and in bilateral series, but Japan and Bangladesh are both unknown entities to us and they are certainly not teams we can take for granted. I think we can expect conditions to be similar to India, where we recently toured, with the temperature, pitches and conditions to be the same. I've not spoken to the men's side who have recently toured Bangladesh about conditions, but I'm sure some of my teammates have spoken to their friends in the men's side for tips. I'm also confident that our coach, Sherwin Campbell will prepare us fully," informed Taylor.
Even before the side begins its battle for a spot in the coveted ICC Women's World Cup in 2013, the West Indies, the team has suffered a major casualty. Key player Tremayne Smart has been ruled out through injury and her place has gone to Surbrina Munroe.
"Losing someone like Tremayne was a major blow for us as she is an important bowler for us. She gets wickets and keeps the runs to a few against any opposition top order. However, Surbrina is experienced even though she hasn't played and trained with us as much and I'm confident she will meet our expectations and perhaps beat them by going out and doing her best for the West Indies," said Taylor.
The year of 2011 has been memorable so far for Taylor culminating in her being named as the ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year at the annual LG ICC Awards, in association with FICA, in London.
Taylor said"For me it is a major confidence booster to be playing with the knowledge that I was voted the best women's cricketer this year. It makes me want to play even better and to show my worth by making even more runs so that I can be in the running for next year's award.
"By scoring 600 odd runs last year, including two 80s in India which should have been centuries, showed me that the more work I do the better I become. The more fitness work I put in the better my game becomes and the greater chance I will have to win the award again.
"I won't forget the day I found out I had won the award, I just landed back in Jamaica after the recent series in Guyana and my uncle collected me. We had the radio on as we were driving home and it was announced on the news, I just couldn't believe it We were both so happy. It's a good job he is a safe driver!" recalled Taylor.
The ICC award was a reward for Taylor and vindicates her decision to choose cricket over other passion, football. "I think if I hadn't played cricket for a living I would have played football. I started playing cricket when I was eight-years-old and played my first game for Jamaica at 10, and I just loved it. That being said, I've got five brothers and four sisters and I used to play football all the time with them, so if I hadn't discovered cricket it would be soccer for sure," concluded Taylor.