Self-belief crucial for tie against cup hosts

Rodney Maha

THE national Under-19 men’s cricket team are primed for their plate quarterfinal against World Cup hosts West Indies at Diego Martin Sporting Complex tonight (11pm, PNG time).
The Garamuts finished fourth in their pool after losing all their matches, but the Rodney Maha-coached side could still reach the plate semifinals with a win over Floyd Reifer’s men.
“I know my team can play, they just need to believe in themselves a bit more,” Maha told The National yesterday.
“Besides skills, we are not working on anything new.
“We are focused on working harder on scoring and being more patient against the West Indies.
“Whatever the outcome, I think we will continue to play for positions.
“If we win, we advance (to the semifinals).
“If we lose, we go down and play against other losers.”
Meanwhile, Maha said the World Cup had so far been a huge experience for the Garamuts in understanding the level of cricket required on the international stage.
“Most countries have come off tours while we’ve just been in the country, so our players found it tough to get going,” the Papua New Guinea legend said. “What we have ahead of us is a chance to show what the experience from the last three pool matches has done to our cricket.
“It’s interesting what will unfold.”
Captain Barnabas Maha said despite the results, the team were improving each day. “I don’t think we are far off from where we want to be,” he said.
“But we need to work harder for runs.
“One good individual score or partnership may give us a chance, but everyone must be prepared to work hard.”