Cricket lovely Cricket,

At Lord’s where I saw it;

Cricket lovely Cricket,

At Lord’s where I saw it;

Yardley tried his best

But Goddard won the test.

They gave the crowd plenty fun;

Second Test and West Indies won.

Victory Calypso – Egbert Moore (“Lord Beginner”)

Lawrence George “Yagga” Rowe, the 71-year-old Aquarian and former Windies and Jamaican cricketer has urged West Indies Captain Jason Holder to bat higher in the batting order.

Rowe, a man who knows much about batting, believes that captain Holder has the goods not only as a bowler but also batter.

The former elegant and stylish right-handed batsman has been described by Michael Holding, his former teammate as “the best batsman I ever saw”, and that “I could not imagine anyone ever batting better or being able to.”

Rowe’s ability with the bat was so extraordinary that former Windies legend Gary Sobers believed he could have been the greatest of all West Indian batsmen, albeit others would say, the greatest the world could have ever seen — yes, he was that good!

At one game, Rowe is reported to have hit a ball so cleanly that it followed a level trajectory like a guided missile over the boundary for six, Gideon Haigh a reporter describes the incident thus:

“Early in his innings against England at Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados, in March 1974, he received a bouncer from Bob Willis. He smashed it flat into the stand at square leg; it traveled most of the way at head height.”

According to Haigh, “Critics likened Rowe to Frank Worrell, and it was Worrell’s father-in-law who volunteered the loveliest line of all; he commented that God seemed to have put a bat in Rowe’s hands and counseled him: ‘Go thou and bat.'”

So, it would be prudent for Holder, the ace all-rounder to take his cue from Yagga, a yesteryear class act.

And Holder apparently will be doing just that in short order, he revealed.

Rowe and Holder were both guests on the popular Mason and Guest sports talk show in Barbados recently.

Rowe told the Windies captain then, “I think you are batting a bit too low. I think your spot in this team is number 6, and I honestly think that you are one of the better players on the team, technically sound, you look the part, and you can play the part.”

He said further, “Coming 6 in the middle of the batting, if we have any problems when you get to the wicket at least we would have one of the top-five batting with you and then, if so later on down, you have the rest at the bottom.”

Holder indicated that that’s work in progress, and his batting higher up will happen soon.

“I do believe I have what it takes to come up the order and bat,” said Holder, who is the number-one ranked Test-match all-rounder in the world.

“I think in the not too distant future, you will see me come up the order and bat.”

Rowe was a West Indies batting “hero” in the days before Viv Richards. He played 30 Test matches, scoring a total of 2,047 runs at an average of 43.55.

Rowe is said to “whistle a tune after each attacking shot, as though to complement the music of his bat.”

He suffered problems with his eyesight and was allergic to grass, and that in part led to the premature ending of his career.

In 1974, while playing against England in Barbados, Rowe scored a majestic 302 to help his team to a mammoth total of 596 for 8.

The Windies is currently playing England in the second Test, having won the first Test to lead the series 1-0.

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