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Cricket : McKenzie hoping to build on Bangladesh form

ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC):

Opener Kirk McKenzie believes confidence was key to his exciting form on West Indies A’s recent tour of Bangladesh, and said he was now focused on building on those performances.

The 22-year-old left-hander scored 209 runs at an average of 41 in the three four-day ‘Tests’, hitting 86 in the drawn opener last month before following up with 91 in the second game which the touring side won by three wickets in Sylhet.

“It was similar conditions to the pitches here in Antigua so it was an easy adjustment for me,” McKenzie said.

“I just used the form that I had here [during the Headley-Weekes Trophy] and carried it over.”

He continued: “I was just really confident. The ball was coming onto the bat nicely, I was in good positions and it just happened I was scoring fast. I just took that and tried to make the most of it.”

McKenzie was in great nick during the Headley-Weekes Tri-Series last month, hitting a monumental 221 for West Indies Academy against Team Weekes at Coolidge Cricket Ground.

He faced 386 balls in just over eight hours and struck 26 fours and a six.

The knock cemented his place on the Bangladesh tour, where the Joshua Da Silva-led West Indies A dominated to come away with a 1-0 win.

McKenzie said the trip had been a vital one for him, especially rubbing shoulders with senior players who already had international experience.

“That was really good. There were a lot of Test players and white ball players,” McKenzie explained.

“And I think the professionalism the coaches brought and the skipper brought really helped us going over the line.

“I’m just looking to continue doing the right things, not to slacken off but keep building on what I have so far.”

He added: “Making the A-team was always a goal going into the first-class series but I didn’t really have the first-class season I wanted.

“I still made the A-team so that’s a plus for me. Looking at the start of the year, I didn’t see myself right here now but God has done it for me so far, it’s just for me to continue pushing on.”