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West Indies fast but not fit, coach Stuart Law seeks to rotate

West Indies coach Stuart Law believes the side needs more top-notch fast bowlers in order to bring the glory days back to the Caribbean.

india vs west indies 2017 Updated: Jul 06, 2017 12:20 IST
West Indies head coach Stuart Law believes the side need consistently good fast bowling to win more games.
West Indies head coach Stuart Law believes the side need consistently good fast bowling to win more games. (AFP)

West Indies skipper Jason Holder isn’t the fastest bowler in the Caribbean but his short ball is proving quite effective, and he has got rid of Virat Kohli two games in a row.

If the one on Friday in the third ODI just climbed and caught him by surprise, the one on Sunday was really short and the India skipper mistimed it. Kesrick Williams used his cutters well and only one of Alzarri Joseph’s wicket came from a delivery that beat the batsman for pace.

Yet, for West Indies’ coach Stuart Law, this is a small step towards restoring West Indies to the glory of the past. Law, a former Aussie player, says he wants West Indies to produce fast bowlers, something that has historically been their strength.

“I am looking for fast bowlers. I want fast bowlers. I grew up watching West Indies cricket. It was about fast bowling. It wasn’t about spin,” said Law after the match.

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“We have some world class spinners. (Leggie Devendra) Bishoo did well, (offie Ashley) Nurse has been proving his worth but if we have fast bowlers, it’d be nice to have a stable of them providing a go.”

At the moment, West Indies are following a rotation policy for fast bowlers, ensuring they don’t get injured. When an official apprised Andy Roberts of the fact that fellow Antiguan Joseph was being rested, he said nothing but a wry smile said it all. Roberts has been a strong critic of West Indies pacers not doing enough running, which he believes is the key to becoming a good fast bowler.

Fast, not fit

A few days back he told this correspondent that the bowlers are not bowling enough overs in the nets.

At the moment Shannon Gabriel is recovering from injury while Law has refused to pick all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite because of fitness and bowling issues.

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Law agreed his bowlers aren’t fit enough, including Alzarri Joseph, who was rested in the previous match. “He is just 20 but Alzarri is building up nicely. We have got some testing done but unfortunately our bowlers aren’t as fit as they should be, which doesn’t enable them to bowl long spells as they should do. We are giving them rotation so that when they come back, they can hit the ground running.

“I believe in these boys, they have talent. I believe they have skill and talent, they need to improve work ethic,” said Law.

Skipper Holder, named Man-of-the-Match for his 5/27, was asked about it. He said West Indies have enough fast bowling resources and rotation is helping them get ready.

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Law also praised the fielding. “Fielding was outstanding and pressure catching was up to the mark.”