Bishoo Deflated, But Not Despondent

Date Published: 
Guyana Times
Avenash Ramzan

Out-of-favour West Indies leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo is disappointed with being axed for the current tour of England, but is confident he has the ability to rebound and get his budding career back on track.

During an exclusive interview with this publication yesterday, the 26-year-old right-arm bowler and left-handed batsman revealed that he is back on his home turf at the Albion Community Centre ground, hard at training, with the hope of once again rising on the world stage.

I’m back in training ever since I returned home. With the exception of weekends, I am at Albion every day; just trying to get back to where I want to be, and that is to play for the West Indies again,” Bishoo explained.

Devendra Bishoo in a relaxed mood after a recent training session at the Albion Community Centre ground.

While he has not played any cricket since the first Test against Australia on April 7-11 at the Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados, Bishoo has undertaken a heavy diet of physical training, and is keen on getting into competitive action once again.

But that seems a distant probability unless he ventures out to the semi-professional league in Trinidad and Tobago, as there is no national competition or club tournament being played at the moment.

Persistent rainfall has been wreaking havoc in the Ancient County of Berbice, and according to Public Relations Officer of the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB), Hilbert Foster, almost all the grounds are inundated, and as such, all competitions have been put on hold. Therefore, once the weather becomes favourable for cricket, Bishoo will be provided with several opportunities to assess his game since there are several First Division competitions on the BCB’s roster, including the Independence Cup T20 fundraiser, the Ramcharitar Construction Firm 50-over, the Telenec 50-over and the Carib Beer T20.

Bishoo added that while this current period of his career has provided him with an opportunity to critically assess his game and make the necessary changes to return a better player, he is disheartened at missing the chance to play at the Mecca of cricket- the Lord’s cricket ground, where the West Indies and England will square off in the first Test from Thursday.

Yes, I was really looking forward to that [playing at Lord’s], but that wasn’t to be…I’m very disappointed, but that’s not in my control. I will just have to go back and work hard, and hopefully my chance will come some other time,” he reasoned.

After an impressive start to his international career in the 2011 World Cup against England in March in Chennai, Bishoo has had a difficult time this year, playing just one Test match and sitting out the entire five-match ODI series and two-game T20 series against the touring Australians in the Digicel Home Series.

In the Test against the Aussies, he returned unflattering figures of 1-125 and 0-44 in the two innings. He was dropped for the second Test in Trinidad and was replaced by off-spinner Shane Shillingford, who finished with 3-92 and 1-55, and troubled the tourists’ batsmen. Shillingford followed up with a 10-wicket match haul in the third and final Test in Dominica, and secured the lone spinner’s berth on the squad to England.

Prior to the Test series, he was forced to watch the action from the dugouts, with Trinidad and Tobago’s mystery spinner Sunil Narine being preferred for the ODIs and T20Is.

The recent string of events represents a complete reversal of fortunes for Bishoo, who, only last September, was named the Emerging Player-of-the-Year for 2011 at the ICC Awards ceremony in London.

After 11 Test matches, Bishoo has bagged 40 wickets at an average of 39.55 with career-best figures of 5-90, while in the ODI arena, he has captured 20 wickets from 13 games at an average of 23.80 and career-best of 3-34. In 36 First-Class outings, he has collected 150 wickets at 29.24 apiece.