CPL 2018: Jamaica Tallawahs’ Johnson Charles sets himself 600-run benchmark

Discarded West Indies opener Johnson Charles has set himself a benchmark to force his way back into international cricket: 600 runs in the upcoming Caribbean Premier League (CPL) which starts August 18.

Charles, 29, has not played for West Indies since November 2016. In 48 ODIs, he has scored 1283 runs at an average of 26.72, with two centuries and four fifties, while in 32 T20Is he has managed 724 runs at a strike-rate of 121.68, with four half-centuries.

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Charles will feature for Jamaica Tallawahs in the 2018 CPL, having managed just 158 runs in ten games for St Lucia Stars last season.

“Last year, I didn’t have the best of years, and so I am looking to get back up there in terms of runs because my main aim is to get the most runs in the tournament,” he told The Jamaica Gleaner. I am eyeing 600 runs at least this year. It (batting) has been coming up because I have been doing some work, and it has been coming off better than last year, and so this year, hopefully, it all come together.

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In scoring heavily, Charles was hopeful of taking his new franchise to the CPL title.

“It is going to be a different feeling from back home playing for the St Lucia Stars, but it is all about adapting, and I am just looking to come out and give a good performance and a good account of myself and to help the Jamaica Tallawahs win,” he said. “The Jamaicans, they are very vocal, but they are not the most vocal in the world because I have played a lot of international cricket, and one way I have learnt to deal with crowd is to block them out and just play my cricket whenever I get out on to the field. I know that it is going to be a tremendous atmosphere at Sabina Park, and I am looking forward to this.

Charles enters the CPL after a poor run in the inaugural Global T20 Canada, where he managed 65 runs in six innings.