Wanted: Destroyer of Indian bowlers
The disquiet in the misfiring West Indies line-up over their senior players is apparent. After the hosts went down to India, despite the absence of senior players, the cracks only grew wider. N Ananthanarayanan reports.cricket Updated: Jun 08, 2011 01:46 IST
The disquiet in the misfiring West Indies line-up over their senior players is apparent. After the hosts went down to India, despite the absence of senior players, the cracks only grew wider.
Senior batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan, who top-scored in Monday's four-wicket defeat, underlined the value of experience as he and Marlon Samuels helped put up at least a modest total. Sarwan said how the team missed the explosive Chris Gayle, ignored for the first two games due to a row with the cricket board.
Samuels, who skipped the World Cup saying he was not ready, showed some batting rhythm and the India bowlers will have to work to keep him under check.With the West Indies under extra pressure ahead of Wednesday's second game at the Queen's Park Oval, where the slow pitch will test the batsmen again, the 30-year-old Guyanese player spoke his mind.
“You're putting me in a spot man,” he told the reporter who wanted to know if the Jamaican left-hander, who was in blazing form in the IPL, would have made a difference.
“Chris is the most feared batsman. Yes, we are missing him. But the selectors have made a decision,” said Sarwan. The selectors may pick Gayle for the last three ODIs if a scheduled meeting with the board proves successful.
Sarwan himself went through a low and was dropped before being recalled halfway through the Pakistan ODI series as the team struggled. Coach, Ottis Gibson, criticised the senior players for the poor showing at the World Cup, and Shivnarine Chanderpaul is the other seasoned batsman who has angered the board with media comments.
“These are the best runs since the World Cup,” Sarwan, who scored 56, said. “But I'm still not fluent. I have to work on a few things.”
The West Indies struggled to rotate the strike and the India spinners kept them quiet during the Twenty20 and opening ODI.
The West Indies bounced back against Pakistan to win the last two games but the series was lost by then.
Sarwan suggested the criticism was not helping the players. “When you are not winning, everything becomes an issue. The spinners have given us trouble in the middle overs. But it is important we do a lot of work.”