Bascome to continue family tradition
Osagi Bascome left the island yesterday on his first international trip with Bermuda, joining cousin Drewonde Bascome in the squad for the Caribbean Cup second-round match against French Guiana.
It has turned out to be cricket's loss as the 18-year-old midfielder could easily have been named alongside his brothers Onias and Okera in the Bermuda training squad which is also preparing for the World Cricket League Division Four tournament
He was a talented young bowler before moving to England with his family several years ago.
Bascome, a former Bermuda Under-17 and Under 15 player, has now opted to concentrate on football and plays for Levante's academy in Spain after a stint at Valencia.
He is part of a youthful Bermuda team which arrived in Florida yesterday for a training camp to prepare for Wednesday's match against French Guiana in Cayenne.
“It's a great compliment, I feel I'm ready to represent Bermuda and I think we can do the country proud,” said Bascome, who speaks fluent Spanish.
“I was at Valencia the first year and then I moved to Levante, who just got relegated into the Second Division.
“Even though I'm still young I have a lot of experience playing outside of Bermuda and I think that can help the country a lot. I think I bring a lot to the team.”
Bascome comes from a family of sportsmen, his father Herbie and uncles Andrew, the Bermuda coach, and David were all top footballers.
He also got his cricketing ability from his father, as well as his mother Carla's side of the family, the Foggos from St George's.
With football his first love, cricket ended up being the loser, although two of his brothers, Oronde and Onias, have played Cup Match for St George's like their father, uncle Gregg and grandfather Gregory Foggo.
“I had to choose, I couldn't be a professional in cricket and football so I chose the one I love more,” Bascome said. “Now I just play cricket for fun.”
The decision to move to England and then to Spain is paying off for Bascome, who hopes to play professionally in either England or Spain.
“England is always an option, I'll just see where my career takes me,” Bascome said. “I was just ten when I left Bermuda.”
Reggie Lambe, the Mansfield Town winger, will captain Bermuda in the absence of Keishen Bean, who is unavailable, and Huddersfield Town striker Nahki Wells, who is recovering from a knee injury.
“It's always an honour to play for your national team, but it's an even bigger honour to lead your side out,” Lambe said.
“Hopefully they see me as a captain for the future and maybe even retain it even when the other players come back.
“I had a little think about it to see if it was something I wanted to do because of my role already in the team.
“But I think I can handle what comes with being the captain, the pressure and having to be a role model for the other players in the team.”
Lambe has confidence the youngsters in the team can step up to the challenge facing them in French Guiana, a team Bermuda defeated 2-1 at the National Stadium in the first round of the Caribbean Cup in March.
“They caught us by surprise when they came here, but I think we can go there and do the same that we did here,” Lambe said.
“Hopefully we don't have to fight back from a deficit, and I think we have the strength in the squad to go down there and get a result.
“We have a few youngsters, a few people coming back from college, and they're ready to show the coaches what they can do. I believe in everybody who's going on the trip and I think we can go down there and get a result.”
“We'll go with the same mentality as in the last round and hopefully we'll come out top of this group.”
Bermuda take on Dominican Republic at home in their second and final match in group four next Saturday.
The second round of the competition features five groups, with the winners and four best runners-up advancing to the third round to be held from October 3 to 9. Jamaica, Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago have received a bye to the third round.