GALLE, Sri Lanka (CMC): All-rounder Carlos Brathwaite says West Indies will need to make adjustments and be disciplined in all areas, in order to beat Sri Lanka in the two-Test series starting here tomorrow. The 27-year-old said the bowling department needed to be consistent with their lengths, while the batsmen needed to be prudent with their shot selection, the combination of which would place pressure on Sri Lanka. “The pacers need to find the right lengths to bowl, whether they are using it in an attacking sense or they are using it as a defensive cog to allow the spinners to exert some pressure and get some wickets from their end,” said Brathwaite, who led West Indies A here last year. “Batting wise, we need to be a lot more selective. What I found playing against Sri Lanka A is that the spinners play with their fields very well, so simple things like mid-on and mid-off hanging – normally in the Caribbean we have them really tight or back on the boundary – just little adjustments like that, knowing if to push and get a single or if to go over the top. “A couple of our guys were caught at a three-quarter mid-on.” Brathwaite is yet to play a Test, but pressed the case for a call-up when he lashed an attacking 54 against Sri Lanka Cricket President’s XI, in a drawn three-day tour match which finished on Sunday. probing seamer A probing seamer, he is part of a youthful West Indies squad attempting to win the first ever Test by a Caribbean side on Sri Lankan soil. “Once we get those two things – the adjustments to the field and skilfully playing spin, getting off strike, knowing when to attack and knowing when to defend and the bowlers getting their lengths right, even the spinners bringing the batsmen on the front foot a lot more and forcing them to make more decisions more often than not – I think we will be successful.” West Indies were hit by controversy even before leaving the Caribbean when head coach Phil Simmons was suspended by the West Indies Cricket Board, for being openly critical of the selection of the ODI team. With the team having arrived to stifling humidity in Colombo two weeks ago, the West Indies have seemed to be up against it, but Brathwaite said there was a great sense of togetherness in the unit. “Having been here last year with the A team, I kind of understood the conditions and how to settle in because we had a similar acclimatisation period with the A team last year, so I probably settled quicker than most of the guys,” he pointed out. “The main thing for me is how the guys are interacting off the field. Someone is always in someone else’s room or you see guys at dinner three or four in a bunch so it’s good camaraderie. I know over time that will transfer and translate to on the field and we can win some matches for West Indies.”
Russell Alexie and 45 other residents of Karluk Manor took shelter at St. John United Methodist Church after the Nov. 30 earthquake. (Hillman/Alaska Public Media)All 46 residents of Karluk Manor, an apartment building in Anchorage for people with disabilities, were evacuated after the earthquake. They won’t be able to return home until Wednesday at the earliest because of a broken water main and damages to the building. But the community pulled together to make sure they were safe.When the earthquake started on Friday morning, Russell Alexie was sitting in his room at Karluk Manor in Fairview.“It was scary. I got to watch my TV fall, my dishes fall,” he recalled. “All the shaking and rattling. It was scary.”When it ended, he joined the rest of the residents in the building’s cafeteria. He left his room with just his jacket, shoes, and most of his medications. He normally uses a walker, but he couldn’t get it down the stairs and the elevators weren’t working.“Then the cafeteria, the dining area, (the ceiling) started leaking really crazy,” he said. “Then everyone was trying to get back in their rooms and get their clothes.”The power, heat, and water were out, and it was unclear when it would all be restored. Some staff made sandwiches while others made plans.Corrine O’Neill is the supportive housing division director for RurAL CAP, which runs Karluk Manor. She said that by late afternoon it was clear residents needed a new place to live, but the logistics were difficult.“All of our people are disabled and a majority of them are seniors with mobility challenges,” she explained.When other housing options for the large group fell through, they got in touch with St. John United Methodist Church on O’Malley, where Andy Bartel is a pastor, who offered to house people in the church’s gym.“We weren’t sure exactly how we were going to do this,” he said. “It was almost zero notice, and we were busy cleaning up our own messes in our homes, just like everybody else in Anchorage. But when we heard that there would be people without a roof, without a warm place to sleep, without food, the answer was ‘yes.’”Within an hour the church community pulled together mattresses and bedding. Sal’s New York Grill and Catering donated meals, and other volunteers hosted BINGO games and provided entertainment.“If the church doesn’t exist for this,” Pastor Bartel said, “then why do we exist?”Betty Sanchez Sopcak (l), her husband Daniel (bottom), and her uncle James Sugar (r) take shelter with other residents of Karluk Manor at St. John United Methodist Church after the Nov. 30 earthquake. (Hillman/Alaska Public Media)Karluk resident Betty Sanchez Sopcak, who said she prayed like she never had before during the earthquake, was happy to be welcomed at the church.“And I thank God for this wonderful church that took Karluk Manor in,” she said. “And the people here are just wonderful. God’s blessing them through helping.”But she said she is also ready to go home, or at least move closer.After two nights at the church, the group was moved to the Red Cross Shelter at Fairview Recreation Center, not far from Karluk. The shelter housed about 15 people Saturday night, according to their spokesperson Cari Dighton. They expected about 60 people on Sunday, including all of the Karluk Manor residents. The shelter will remain open until it is no longer necessary.RurAL CAP is seeking donations to fix the water main and other damages, such as broken televisions that provide entertainment to people with major mobility challenges. You can give here.