Ganga desperate for consistency

ANTIGUA — West Indian opener Darren Ganga feels that he needs to be more consistent from now on to be a regular member of the side.

By (Cricket News)

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Published: Sat 3 Jun 2006, 11:08 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 7:20 PM

“One of the things that has plagued me throughout my career is my consistency. It’s has been something that I have been working at for the past two years. My objective now is to convert more of my starts into big scores,” said Ganga, the Trinidadian.

Consistency alone cost Ganga a regular berth in the side. For somebody who began his career in the 90s at the age of 19 and has so far played 34 Tests, Ganga somehow still doesn’t command a regular place in the side. His average of 24:08 is modest.

There were signs on the tour of New Zealand earlier this year when he produced consistent stands with Chris Gayle for the first wicket which gave West Indies steady starts. Gayle knows exactly why he was relatively successful in New Zealand.

“My approach to the New Zealand series was different to any other Test series. I had come to the firm belief that putting myself in the position of leadership and placing that responsibility in myself, trying to take control fo the situation as captain really challenged me and brought out the best in me as a player. In the past I might have been a bit dormant in trying to take the bull by the horns.”

Ganga first became acquainted with the leadership approach on the Sri Lanka tour of 2004 when the contract dispute between the players and the board nearly brought the game to a halt in the West Indies.

“The Sri Lanka tour really put the icing on the cake in terms of creating that thought process and that mode of thinking.

“That tour was very influential in terms of me putting myself in a leadership mindset. The A team tour contributed to that. When I’m captaining sides, my performance level raises a lot more than when I am not in that position. I needed to create a mindset where I was always thinking like that of a leader.”

The experience of leading Trinidad and Tobago this season also seemed to help Ganga’s approach to his batting.

“It’s understanding how to fit the entire puzzle together. Darren Ganga performing well and achieving individual goals does not necessarily guarantee the success of the team.

“And in order to get that success as a team, a lot more of my emphasis had to be placed on all players trying to get the best out of them.” In doing so, he says, in focusing his energies less on himself and more on others, his own cricket got a chance to grow.

“It took the pressure away from my personal game.” Now 27, Ganga is hardly a beaten man. He feels his fight has only begun.

“I am a person who thrives on optimism. I know that I have the capability to be a world class performer at the international level. “I know the opportunities are not going to come by as regular as they would have when I was a teenager. But there are still going to be opportunities out there because of the amount of cricket that is being played.”

He is man who realises that there is no tomorrow.

“It’s all about understanding my ability as a player, knowing how to deal with situations,. A couple of years ago it was all a matter of me feeling my way in situations. “I lacked a certain amount of self belief and confidence in what I did. But over time, I’ve matured and that maturity has brought more conviction in my entire game.”

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