Two of the country’s newest selectees to the Leeward Islands Hurricanes franchise, Karima Gore and Deran Benta, are sharing similar hopes and aspirations following news they had been picked up in the Cricket West Indies (CWI) Professional Cricket League (PCL) Draft for the 2022/23 regional season.
Benta, who represents the CUB Bethesda Golden Eagles in the country’s domestic programme, is happy that his hard work is paying off, but says he must continue to perform at a high standard.
“I’ve been working hard for the past couple of seasons and I am happy that they recognise my abilities and have given me a chance to represent at the regional level. I am going to showcase my talent and do my best for the team. I will continue to work hard and learn everything that is passed on to me, and I also expect to continue my form so I can be retained for a longer period,” he said.
Benta, a wicketkeeper batsman, was the leading scorer in the Super 40 with 394 runs and a highest of 115 while claiming a total of four wickets for 50 runs. To date, he has smashed a highest of 71 in the Two Day and has amassed 209 runs. Benta has also picked up 11 wickets.
Gore, a PIC Liberta Blackhawks all-rounder who recently represented the USA, said the opportunity is one he has long waited for.
“It’s something I’ve been looking forward to from since a younger age, but the opportunity has presented itself now, so I think it’s just time for me to do the basics and use the experience that I have. It’s a chance also for me to grow my cricket because I’ll be in a professional set-up as well where I would be practicing every day and that’s something that I want to do, so I could grow different aspects of my game slowly,” he said.
Gore, playing in the Super 40 this season, amassed a total of 339 runs with a highest of 123 while bagging 10 wickets for 195 runs. He has scored another 211 runs in the Two Day format so far with a top knock of 85 while claiming 24 wickets with two five-fors (5/22 and 5/37).
Gore and Benta joins all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall, batsmen Devon Thomas and Kofi James as the other Antiguans in the Leeward Islands Hurricanes squad.