Gibson full of praise for 'mature' Barath

Colombo, Sri Lanka – West Indies Head Coach Ottis Gibson has praised young opener Adrian Barath for his brilliant maiden One-Day International century on Monday.

Gibson described Barath’s stroke-filled 113 off 129 balls as “something special” and said the 20-year-old right-hander showed maturity beyond his years.

Barath piloted the Windies to 245-5 off 50 overs in the series opener. The match was abandoned at the halfway stage due to heavy rain. The knock was Barath’s second international century – following the 104 he made on Test debut in Australia at age 19.

“Adrian played a brilliant innings. He played with a lot of maturity. I have been seeing that in the last couple of series, he is starting to mature as a player and ‘finding’ his game and this showed yesterday in that superb innings. It was an innings of total control. The Sri Lankans bowled well early on, in what were difficult conditions for batting, but he stayed there and capitalised in the middle overs. It was some of the best batting I have seen for a long time in the middle of an innings between himself and Ramnaresh Sarwan. That got us to a very competitive total in the end.”

Gibson was speaking after the Windies had a full training session on Tuesday at the Sinhalese Sports Club. The 2nd ODI match is at the same venue on Thursday. First ball is 9.30 am (12 midnight Eastern Caribbean Time/11 pm Wednesday Jamaica Time). The 3rd ODI is on Sunday.

Sarwan made 75 from 100 balls on his return to the team on Monday – with a massive straight six and four crisp fours. The 30-year-old right-hander helped Barath add 165 from 184 balls.

Gibson said: “We have always known what Sarwan is capable of. The way he played, it showed that he is a class player, and it was good to see the way he controlled the middle period and put us on top. The partnership was fantastic for us and that is the kind of approach we will need in the future going forward – with our senior players guiding our younger players. It was great to see. In tough situations we need them to get us to match-winning totals and ultimately win matches for us.”

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