Royals Sports Group-owned Barbados Royals have on Wednesday announced the appointment of West Indies’ T20I skipper Rovman Powell as their captain for the upcoming 2023 edition of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
The 30-year-old joined Barbados in a trade from Jamaica earlier in May, and will be working closely with Head Coach Trevor Penney and Royals’ Director of Cricket Kumar Sangakkara. Barbados’ batting all-rounder Kyle Mayers will also be part of the leadership group, having been appointed as the vice-captain.
Powell, the swashbuckling all-rounder, led the Jamaica Tallawahs to the CPL title last season, and has scored 1231 runs and picked up 17 wickets in 62 matches for them during his six seasons with the franchise. Having made the switch to the Royals, Powell says he’s looking forward to starting this new journey with a franchise he’s followed closely, “First of all, I would like to thank Jamaica for all the opportunities and the memories, and also express my gratitude to all their supporters. However, as a professional cricketer, you go through changes in your career and have to make some tough choices. I have always followed Barbados as a franchise in the CPL, and to be able to come here to take up a new challenge and lead the team is a tremendous opportunity for me. I have had a few conversations with the coaches and the management, and it feels like it is a closely knit franchise. There is a great mix of talent in our squad, where everyone complements each other, and with the team having made the finals last year, the aim will now be to bring everyone together again and go one step further.”
A sensational 2022 season for Powell saw him finish as the joint fifth highest run scorer with 281 runs in 12 innings for the Tallawahs, with his contribution as a leader standing out as he won his second CPL title with Jamaica.
Royals’ Director of Cricket Kumar Sangakkara spoke on the reasoning behind appointing Powell as the skipper. He said: “After the highs of last season where we finished as the finalists, we went back to the drawing board and identified some areas which we needed to address. One of them was to strengthen our West Indian core of players, and having someone with the characteristics of Rovman’s in our squad adds quality, depth and experience. He is also someone who is well respected across the Caribbean, and has a good cricketing brain which I could notice even during my time at Jamaica in 2016-17. He is also the Windies skipper in this format and has displayed good leadership qualities, so it was only fair that we had a conversation with him and made the decision given David (Miller) is not playing the CPL this season. Rovman did lead his team to the CPL trophy last season…unfortunately against us, and we are hoping he can do a repeat, but this time with the Royals.”
Barbados Royals Men will go into the 2023 CPL season with a star studded line-up which has a mixture of experience and youth. Jason Holder, Rahkeem Cornwall, Obed McCoy, Donovan Ferreira, Roelof van der Merwe, Alick Athanaze, and Justin Greaves are all part of the 17-member squad.
Meanwhile, the Barbados Royals Women’s team will again be led by Windies skipper Hayley Matthews who guided the squad to the Finals of Women’s Caribbean Premier League (WCPL), and will be joined by some experienced names in Afy Fletcher, Aaliyah Alleyne, Laura Harris and Chedean Nation among others.