Powell is back to thrill

Former Jamaica and West Indies
power-hitting batsman, Ricardo Powell, is ready to return to cricket.

Powell resumes training at his club
Queen’s Park in his adopted homeland, Trinidad and Tobago, today.

“Something is missing from
West Indies cricket, it’s not getting better, we need to build it back,”
said the 31-year-old ace fielder and entertaining batsman.

He revealed that he has already met
with the West Indies Cricket Board chairman of selectors, Clyde Butts, and told
the T&T captain, Daren Ganga, about his intentions.

Powell said he had been giving returning
some thought for over a year, but his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer
last year and those plans were put on hold.

“If I were playing cricket
now, I would be a better professional player,” said Powell. “I have
gained tremendous work ethic from running three successful companies over the
last four years.”

Asked about the frequent salary
squabbles that now dog the team’s performance, Powell admitted that back at the
height of his career, he too was playing for money, but now, he said “my
business can pay my bills, there is a missing piece in West Indies cricket and
I want to be part of putting it back”.

Powell is giving himself three
months to be fully prepared and once he returns, he believes he can put in
another five good years of playing before retiring.

He is remembered as the youngest
West Indian to score a one-day international century. He made 2,000 ODI runs at
a strike rate of 98, which is the highest strike rate for a West Indian player
with more than 1,000 ODI runs. He also emulated Gordon Greenidge by hitting
eight sixes in an ODI innings against India in 1999 in Singapore – a West
Indies ODI record.

Powell also hit seven sixes in another
ODI against India in Toronto that year. In total, he hit 75 sixes in 100 ODI
innings, a ratio equal to that of Viv Richards.

Powell moved from Jamaica in 2004
to his wife’s Trinidad and Tobago and retired from cricket in 2006 to
concentrate on his busineses.

He is the chief executive officer
of Basia Imports Ltd – the publishers of Basia Magazine and Basia Sports
Magazine, and also heads John Powell Advertising, which produces the popular
‘Basia Talk Show’, soon to be aired on local television.

Powell has managed to keep fit
through his efforts as trainer and mentor at the Basia Sports Foundation, which
has produced several successful cricket clinics for the young talent in
Trinidad and Tobago.