Talented cricketer setting sights on playing for West Indies
Another young talented Barbadian cricketer Shakeem Clarke has his eyes set on playing for the West Indies some day and a visit to South Africa where he will play for the next six to eight months is a step in that direction.
Indeed, his name and heritage are likely to encourage much interest in the Rainbow Nation.
The 20-year-old told Barbados TODAY that it has always been his vision to play at the highest level and when the opportunity came up to travel, play and coach in South Africa he did not hesitate.
“This is a great opportunity for me and I am thankful. A guy by the name of Fanie de Villiers came to play cricket for Wanderers club this year, so it’s a form of an exchange programme. I am just going over to play for a club call Irene Villagers and I will also be coaching at Cornwall Hill which is a private College,” said Clarke, who will also be coached by former South African cricketer Fanie de Villiers Snr. who played 18 Tests and 38 One-Day Internationals for his country and is now seeking to steer his son who bears his name in a similar direction.
A product of both Wesley Hall Primary and Deighton Griffith Secondary, Clarke said when he thinks about the game his father Sylvester Clarke, a fearsome fast bowler for West Indies, Barbados and English county Surrey who died when he was only four-years-old, comes to mind.
“Every time I think about cricket I think of my father and I would say I want to be just like him or even better,” said Clarke, who has been playing for Wanderers for the past two years.
The right-handed fast bowler produced one of the best spells of his career for Wanderers when he took three wickets for seven runs in one over in the quarterfinal of the T20 competition against Maple. Last Sunday in the 50 overs competition match against LIME Clarke proved –– just like his father –– that he can hold his own with the bat, scoring 31 not out batting at number 11 against LIME.
Shakeem’s highly respected dad was a legend in South African, taking 193 wickets between 1984 and 1989 in the Currie Cup first-class competition at an average of 17.55.
“I see this opportunity as a stepping stone towards gaining more experience,” said Clarke, who departs the island on September 3 and returns April 2016.