Jacobs favours players’ development over title success

Jacobs, who will be making his debut as team coach during the June 1-19 tournament, said his main goal is to develop the Antiguan players to play at a higher level for teams such as the Leeward Islands in regional first class cricket and the West Indies at the international level.

“I totally forget about winning the tournament because I want to see guys when they represent the Leeward Islands they would have learnt something from what I would have taught them as coach of the Antigua cricket team. That is what I want to see,” Jacobs said.

“I want whenever a player goes on to represent Leeward Islands and West Indies there must be something that he can say the coach taught him and I am learning very well. That is what I want.”

Antigua & Barbuda have often dominated the sub-regional Leeward Islands senior tournament over the years by virtue of winning more titles than any of the other participating territories.

Antigua & Barbuda will also be the favourites to retain the title, which they last won when the competition was held three years ago.

The Antiguans will be defending their title against Montserrat, St Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla.

Meanwhile, Jacobs said he has no problem with the Antigua & Barbuda Cricket Association’s (ABCA) decision to appoint, for the first time, a cadre of other consultants or coaches to assist him in getting the team ready for the upcoming three-day tournament.

The ABCA has named former national coaches Pernel “Shafto” Watley and John Archibald as bowling consultants, and ex-Combined Islands and national opener Guy Yearwood as batting consultant for the senior national team.

Former Combined Islands allrounder Hugh Gore, who is also a coach, has been retained as team manager.

Jacobs said the knowledge that will be imparted by the consultants to the Antiguan players will certainly make his job as head coach a lot easier.

“I have no problem whatsoever. I think most of the guys that the ABCA has selected are knowledgeable guys and have experience in that field,” Jacobs said.

“We have Pernell Watley, who has coached the Antigua national team before; John Archibald, who has also coached the national team; and Guy Yearwood, who has been there in terms of playing and managing the Antigua team.

“They are all very experienced and with their knowledge it should be a plus for me.

“Hugh Gore knows the game inside out and so that is a plus for the team and me as well.”

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