Clay Smith represented Bermuda's national cricket team for more than 18 years, skippering the side that qualified for the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean. A current national team selector, Smith scored centuries for Bermuda in the Red Stripe Cup in the West Indies against Windward Island and Jamaica. He also represented the Island in four ICC Trophies Domestically, he initially played his club cricket at St George's before moving to St David's as a player/coach. He also coached Cleveland and his boyhood club St George's. Smith was a regular for St George's in Cup Match and captained the East Enders to victory in the 1997 edition of the annual Classic.
Jan 23, 2015 8:00 am
International cricket will make some players, while it will destroy others. It has been discussed for several years now about how majority of Bermuda players can perform admirably domestically, but when they go overseas they struggle to perform anywhere near their best. Why is that?
Bermudians are known to be some of the most gifted players around, but what are the key ingredients that we are yearning for or are in need of? When you...
Jan 16, 2015 8:00 am
As the cricket season slowly approaches, I find myself daily writing teams down, looking at possible transfer options, making notes and finding new and exciting drills that would stimulate and improve my players at Cleveland.
Then I hear this voice from a coach, whom I had a conversation with last summer, saying, “You can’t save cricket, cricket is finished.”
Is this really true? Is cricket really finished or have we just accepted...
Jan 9, 2015 8:00 am
Now that we have entered 2015, the cricket season will be upon us before we know it. The following is my wish list of things I would like to see happen throughout the 2015 cricket calendar year.
n 1, Bermuda regain some pride when they go to the World Twenty20 qualifiers in May.
n 2, The youth leagues to play cricket right through the summer, which would allow our young ones to play more.
n 3, St George’s to regain the Cup...
Jan 2, 2015 8:00 am
The year has come to an end and it’s time we reflect on cricket in general for 2014. There was the good, the bad and the ugly, but as we reflect, we must learn from our good and our bad, so that we can grow and have an even better 2015.
Let’s start with the good in 2014. The Bermuda Cricket Board reverted to two divisions for the domestic league programme, which made for some very competitive cricket in both divisions.
Dec 19, 2014 12:01 am
Since I have been elected to the Bermuda Cricket Board as a club representative I have been doing nothing but talking to friends in other countries, trying to find ideas on how we can improve our cricket.
It is of no secret that our cricket needs an overhaul to some extent, but it has to be done tactfully and with a purpose. The question is where do we start?
In recent weeks we have heard Janeiro Tucker and Lionel Cann, two...
Dec 12, 2014 8:00 am
We pause this week to take a more global reflection on the cricket arena.
Undoubtedly, those of us who consider ourselves fanatics of the game would be cognisant of the death of Phillip Hughes. This young Australian batsman was in the prime of his life when he died two days after being struck by a bouncer.
The only consolation is that he died while representing his state team in the game that he cherished, the lovely game of...
Dec 5, 2014 8:00 am
It may be December, but speculation is rampant in respect to who will replace Wendell Smith at St David’s CCC. With Smith’s track record as coach at St David’s it will be a tough act to follow for his replacement.
St David’s won the league title three of the past four years, among other trophies. Some names come to mind to replace Smith, such as Herbie Bascome, Dean Minors, Albert Steede and Del Hollis.
The conditions at St...
Nov 28, 2014 8:00 am
The clubs have spoken and have clearly backed Lloyd Fray to be president of the Bermuda Cricket Board for another term. So if Fray is not the problem, then who is or what is?
This is what we need to get to the bottom of so that, in two years’ time, we are not deeper in a hole.
I have thrown my name into the fold and have joined the Board as a club representative. I decided, why sit on the outside complaining when I could join them...
Nov 21, 2014 1:04 am
The bad taste of the Bermuda cricket team’s demise in Malaysia lingers to such an extent that many are expecting a change in president come November 26. I don’t see it happening.
What transpired in Malaysia has not gone down well and many want to know the reasons behind such a travesty.
What better way to find out than talk to a player who actually toured and experienced it all.
Surprisingly, this past week, a few players...
Nov 14, 2014 8:00 am
I was intrigued to read that the Cricket Association of Nepal’s board was disbanded by its government on grounds of incompetence.
This may be a big surprise to many as they just won the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division Three in Malaysia. One can only wonder why our cricket board is still intact after seeing Bermuda slump to an all-time low, sitting embarrassingly in Division Four.
What really went wrong in Malaysia? Who is...
Nov 7, 2014 8:00 am
A week after our heartbreaking demotion to the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division Four, cricket fans are still stunned and alarmed at what happened in Malaysia.
Last week I concluded my column with a famous quote from John Wooden [the late basketball player and coach]: “Failure isn’t fatal, but failure to change might be.”
The quote speaks volumes of what could happen if the Bermuda Cricket Board allow things to stay the...
Oct 31, 2014 8:00 am
Bermuda played at the Cricket World Cup in 2007, but seven years on and $11 million later, we have plummeted to an all-time low after dropping miserably into ICC World Cricket League Division Four.
How has this happened? Who is to blame? Will there be some resignations? These are some of the questions Bermuda’s cricket fans will be asking.
After all, someone has to be held accountable.
Bermuda’s downfall should be a lesson...
Oct 24, 2014 8:00 am
The Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division Three qualifiers started late on Wednesday night (Bermuda time) and Bermuda got off to a dismal start, losing to the United States in the opening match.
We are in a group of six, along with Malaysia, Singapore, the US, Nepal and Uganda. The top two will gain promotion into Division Two, the third and fourth-placed teams will remain in Division Three, while the bottom two in the group will be...
Oct 10, 2014 8:00 am
When a player represents his country he must realise that there is a different level of commitment and expectation. Players have to realise the importance of training and working hard. When you train hard, it makes it harder for you to give up or fail.
Bermuda are about to embark on a very important journey. Shortly they will be leaving to go to Malaysia for the ICC World Cricket League Division Three tournament.
Oct 3, 2014 8:00 am
Should cricketers who have been neglecting Bermuda for years be given an opportunity to represent Bermuda or train with the national squad in preference to a player who has been around for the past few years training and playing regularly?
Should youngsters be freely given a chance to represent Bermuda instead of having to earn a place on the team?
These are the burning questions surrounding the Jason Anderson dispute.
Sep 26, 2014 8:00 am
The standard of cricket has dropped and it is time we do something drastic about it. I am openly challenging clubs to start planning now for next cricket season and identify ways that they can improve their programmes.
First of all, clubs have to realise that the standard of cricket that is being played in Bermuda is of a low quality and that some of the things that are being accepted just plain shouldn’t be.
What am I talking...
Sep 19, 2014 8:00 am
Last weekend there were some very one-sided T20 games, which makes me wonder whether the Lindo’s T20 tournament should have been split into two divisions, just like the 50-overs league.
With the national team preparing for a Division Three tournament next month, we must always be looking to challenge them against good opposition. As a country, we must look to maintain our standard and try to improve upon it, which means improving the...
Sep 12, 2014 8:00 am
League cricket came to an end last weekend with the final week being full of action. The only thing left to decide is who will take the final spot in the Premier Division next year. Will it be Cleveland County or Western Stars?
I must congratulate the Bermuda Cricket Board for being bold enough to revert to two divisions after a year of one league. Its decision has made for an interesting season in both leagues and that is how it should...
Sep 5, 2014 8:00 am
Cleveland County are now officially the Eastern Counties champions. It was a very interesting series, but in my opinion, there are two issues that are holding the Eastern Counties Cup back from being even bigger and better.
First off, let me say as the coach of Cleveland that I am very proud of my team for their achievements and I am very thankful of our fans for their support. They have been magnificent, from the first game, right to...
Aug 29, 2014 8:00 am
Tomorrow “the mighty Flatts” will try to dethrone Cleveland County in the final of the Eastern Counties Cup. Flatts will attempt to do what Cleveland did against St David’s and end a drought that goes beyond 30 years without the trophy.
If Cleveland have learnt anything from this Eastern Counties series, it is not to take your opponents lightly because cricket is a game played on the field and not on paper. On paper, Cleveland have a...
Aug 22, 2014 8:00 am
This past week has been very interesting having to listen to some of the Bailey’s Bay fans who feel they were robbed or denied the chance of winning the Eastern Counties Cup because of the rain.
The word from the Bay fans is that rain saved Cleveland, but did it really save us or did it save them?
It has been rather interesting listening to various people’s thoughts on how the game would have concluded. The reality is that the...
Aug 15, 2014 8:00 am
I cannot believe Eastern Counties is here again so fast. It seems like just yesterday that we (Cleveland) were ending a 33-year wait to win the trophy, but now the task of holding on to the cup is a major challenge.
Such is the task that I have been having sleepless nights trying to plan and make sure the game plan for Bailey’s Bay is spot on. This is a massive challenge for my Cleveland team, but we are ready, as we know Bailey’s Bay...
Aug 8, 2014 8:00 am
The one thing I learnt from Cup Match 2014 is that Bermuda cricket has hope, providing we continue to get our best young players playing in England. What Bermuda witnessed this Cup Match was three young players coming of age, showing that they can not only play, but excel at the highest level of cricket in Bermuda.
It was a pleasure to watch Terryn Fray, Tre Manders and Delray Rawlins show our senior players how to bat in the recent Cup...
Jul 30, 2014 8:00 am
All the talk is over; Cup Match is finally here.
Looking at the two teams, this year’s match should be very entertaining. There has been a lot of talk about the St George’s team, while Somerset surprised many by dropping one of their more reliable and proven senior players, Stephen Outerbridge.
Many feel that Somerset have a team that could easily keep the cup, but St George’s definitely believe otherwise, as they have picked a...
Jul 25, 2014 8:00 am
Several years ago I walked into Cleveland County Cricket Club as head coach and promised them that in three years we would win the Eastern Counties Cup. Unfortunately, after two years I returned to St George’s before taking an extended break from cricket, thus leaving a void of not fulfilling a promise that would eat away at me inside.
Upon returning to Bermuda this summer, Carlton “Pluke” Smith, the Cleveland president, approached me...
Jul 18, 2014 8:00 am
Over the years of playing and coaching cricket I have come across few cricketers with such love and passion for the game as Jason Anderson.
Jason is a student of the game and loves the game so much that you can often find him engaged in deep conversations about cricket.
Jason started his cricket as a youngster at St George’s Cricket Club. Later he would go on to play Cup Match for St George’s and then represent Bermuda. This...
Jul 11, 2014 8:00 am
By Clay Smith
We have reached the halfway mark of the cricket season and clearly St David’s look a sure bet to win the league, but today I want to look at the good, the bad and the ugly of the first half of the season.
As we all know Cup Match is around the corner and several players will be contesting for places. Throughout the first half of the season some players easily stood out with their performances.
Jul 4, 2014 8:00 am
By Clay Smith
Somerset Cricket Club and St George’s Cricket Club have less than a month before the annual Cup Match classic.
Today I’ll look at both teams to see which players should be worried about their place on the team as well as those who are pushing for a claim.
Also, the topic of club politics has players buzzing with anticipation of what’s to come from this year’s team selections.
For the past two years,...
Jun 27, 2014 8:00 am
Somerset and St George’s Cup Match teams will be picked next month after both teams have held several trial matches.
How significant are the trials and do they all carry the same weight or is the last trial match the main focal point for the selectors?
Will Cup Match ever see the best players playing or will politics always have a place when it comes to selecting teams?
Having been a former Cup Match captain and selector...
Jun 20, 2014 8:00 am
By Clay Smith
St David’s look invincible, but with Cup Match and Bermuda matches on the horizon, I wonder how many of their players will make themselves available for selection.
Last year, only two St David’s players played Cup Match and the last time Bermuda played, not one St David’s player was selected, raising questions about their commitment.
St David’s have an abundance of quality players such as George O’Brien, OJ...
Jun 13, 2014 12:01 am
By Clay Smith
Bermuda cricketers will soon be preparing for the ICC World Cricket League Division Three Tournament, which will be played in Uganda from October 26 to November 2.
However, the issue of captaincy continues to be an area of uncertainty.
Who will captain Bermuda come October? Will it be the regular 50 over captain Stephen Outerbridge, the recent Twenty20 skipper Janeiro Tucker or could we see someone new like...
Jun 6, 2014 8:00 am
One area of cricket that I have been very impressed with is our youth cricket. Having been around to see one or two games over the past few weeks our youth cricket seems to be flourishing, but do notice I said seems to be. I say that because in one breath we have an abundance of young cricketers playing the game, but in another breath many of them disappear by time they reach 16?
It is quite obvious that we continuously have generation...
May 30, 2014 8:00 am
I thought I was going to be relaxing on the beach this summer, but, my, how things have changed for the better.
The challenge of working as head coach of Cleveland County has got me bubbling with anticipation of things to come.
One thing is for sure, I will not sacrifice having a structured, respected, professional programme for the sake of winning.
Hence the reason I was so impressed with Somerset Cricket Club last...
May 23, 2014 8:00 am
The Belco Cup is finally over, but the standard of cricket that was displayed by some of our top players leaves a lot to be desired. There were patches of brilliance and, on the flip side, patches of extremely poor cricket.
One thing that this past weekend showed me is that it will take a very special effort to dethrone St David’s as league champions. Individuals do not win titles; teams do!
Last week I predicted Willow Cuts to...
May 16, 2014 8:00 am
After seeing the first round of the Belco Cup I have a clearer view of what to expect this year from teams in the Premier Division. This year the race at the top will be extremely close. So much so that I think bonus points could be the difference between a team winning and losing the league title.
Two weeks ago I gave a general prediction in my column, but today I will go into more detail as to where I think teams will place in the...
May 9, 2014 8:00 am
Two teams who may find the going tough this year are Bailey’s Bay Cricket Club and St George’s Cricket Club. Both have an abundance of players in school in England and could struggle at the beginning of the season. Will the overseas players be a big miss or will other players within their team step up to the plate?
First, Bay will have at least four missing from their ranks at the start of the season, with Tre Manders, Delray Rawlins,...
May 2, 2014 8:00 am
With the league season merely days away, I have not been impressed with what I have seen thus far from players and clubs. Sadly, our season is due to start this weekend and it would not surprise me if the start of the season is postponed.
For the sake of cricket and its spectators, what few there may be, it would be good if the start of the season is pushed back because players are not prepared properly and neither are the...
Apr 25, 2014 8:00 am
The cricket season is only weeks away, which means that these are crucial days for coaches and players. Coaches need to be focusing on improving the technical and tactical aspects of their players’ game, but they must make training exciting so that players will want to learn.
Looking at the average Bermudian cricketer, both domestically and internationally, there are obvious weaknesses.
The following are three significant aspects...
Apr 19, 2014 12:01 am
Quite often when you read about cricket you only hear about the so-called big teams, such as Southampton Rangers and St David’s, and the lesser teams often go unnoticed.
Therefore, I want to take a closer look at the teams in the Logic First Division. This year the First Division looks to be a very competitive division, but only time will tell. So what teams will gain promotion back into the Logic Premier Division?
One thing all...
Apr 11, 2014 8:00 am
The Bermuda Cricket Board has officially released the player transfers for the 2014 season. Nineteen players have moved on to a different club in hope of a fresh start. Today I will take a closer look at each team in the Premier Division to see if any club gained a significant advantage from players transferring.
Bailey’s Bay, Cleveland, Somerset, Southampton, St David’s, St George’s and Willow Cuts are the teams that will form the...
Apr 4, 2014 8:00 am
Over the past week or so, I have been studying the World Twenty20 games trying to figure out exactly what it is I like and dislike about T20, thus making comparisons with one-day internationals and Test matches.
I have always been a big fan of Test-match cricket, simply because it is the true measure of a good cricketer. As a batsman, you are trying to bat long, which entails concentrating for hours and hours against a variety of...
Mar 28, 2014 8:00 am
The World Twenty20 has started in Bangladesh and what electrifying cricket it has been. As many of you may already know, I am not a big fan of T20 cricket, but this tournament has strangely captured my attention.
Any fan of sports who loves competition would get hooked on this tournament, as many games are won or lost by the smallest of margins.
What makes Twenty20 cricket so special is that it is a fast version of the game. The...
Mar 21, 2014 8:00 am
With the cricket season little more than a month away, clubs will be starting their pre-season training soon. The focus normally is on getting fit and doing a lot of basic skillwork. The whole idea of pre-season training is that you slowly build up, session after session, getting more detailed and intense as you get closer to the season.
Unfortunately, for some clubs pre-season is not as detailed because players are reluctant to attend...
Mar 14, 2014 8:00 am
The World Twenty20 starts this week with a host of countries vying to dethrone West Indies. Long gone are the years when West Indies dominated Test cricket, but they have prevailed in the shorter T20 format. Do they have what it takes to retain their title?
West Indies have a mountain to climb if they are to become the first back-to-back champions because they are in a very tough group, which includes India, Pakistan and Australia.
Mar 7, 2014 8:00 am
If any cricketer wishes to play for another club at the start of the new season they must transfer by the March 31 deadline.
Last season, close to 30 players moved clubs. I want to look into some of the reasons why players move from club to club and what they should look for in a new team.
With deadline day looming, I think it is essential that the Bermuda Cricket Board officially announce any changes to the league structure...
Feb 28, 2014 8:00 am
As I continue my task of seeking ways to improve cricket in Bermuda, this week I wish to discuss one of the most important factors of all, if not, the most: the mentality of the player.
The mentality, or mindset, of a player is a huge factor as to why our cricket is at the standard it is now. Far too many of our cricketers do not take the game seriously enough, hence the reason why our national level has dropped and our domestic level...
Feb 21, 2014 8:00 am
My aim is to address as many different facets of cricket that need improving in Bermuda. In previous weeks, I discussed captaincy, the pitch, coaching, and this week I want to focus on umpires and the role they play in improving Bermuda cricket.
Over the years, I have seen the level of umpiring go up and down. When I first came into the game, the umpiring was at a very high standard. However, midway through my career, I saw the level...
Feb 14, 2014 8:00 am
As I continue to tackle the root of the problem with cricket in Bermuda, this week I want to focus on the coaching aspect of the game, or lack thereof. Coaching is an art. It is a skill, whereby the aim is to improve the individual player or team through teaching certain skills.
Coaching plays a very big part in the overall quality of cricket that we see week in and week out. Many clubs have a coach, but the question is to what extent...
Feb 7, 2014 8:00 am
The Bermuda Cricket Board is doing a good job off the field to keep the sport flourishing, but my concern is what is being done to fix the game on the field. That is where the real problems lie.
Last week, I discussed captaincy and the importance of being a student of the game. This week, I want to focus on the playing surface, better known as the pitch, and what can be done to produce better pitches, which goes a long way towards...
Jan 31, 2014 8:00 am
Bermuda cricket has so many elements that need improving that over the next few weeks. I intend to look at several of them individually, starting with the role of captains.
Captains play an important role in cricket because the game is built around their decision-making. If you had to select a captain, what credentials would that person have?
Most clubs are planning pre-season meetings to discuss their plans for the season. One...
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