A test of en­durance for the West Indies

Weekend Mirror - - CHILDREN’S CORNER -

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eyes will be on the young Bar­ba­dian squad that is presently in Eng­land to rep­re­sent the West Indies in cricket. Far more than fifty per­cent of the play­ers that are se­lected to rep­re­sent the West Indies in the test se­ries are very young and in­ex­pe­ri­enced.

This could be the last tour for Ja­son Holder. It seems that only the in­clement weather can save the West Indies.

The ma­jor­ity of the play­ers will be mak­ing their test ap­pear­ance in Eng­land for the first time. English play­ing con­di­tions can be very dif­fi­cult for overseas play­ers. Not only the very cold weather, but the wet con­di­tions can en­able the bowlers to get more paces from the wick­ets. Fur­ther, the early morn­ing damp­ness will make the ball move around and swing. The English play­ers are at home and the weather will be no prob­lem for them, while the Caribbean play­ers will have to ad­just them­selves to the chang­ing weather con­di­tions.

Only three play­ers in the tour­ing party played test cricket in Eng­land be­fore this tour. Bats­man, Kieron Powell, who went to Eng­land, will find it ex­tremely dif­fi­cult to vin­di­cate his po­si­tion in the team. He will find it ex­tremely hard to ac­cu­mu­late runs. And if he de­cides to play ag­gres­sively then he will be a bound to fail.

Powell may very well be play­ing for the last time for the West Indies team. As for fast bowlers Ke­mar Roach and Shan­non Gabriel, they are ca­pa­ble of get­ting wick- ets. The other quick bowler, Miguel Cummings, can be very ef­fec­tive on the English wick­ets. How­ever, all eyes will be on fast bowler Ja­son Holder, who is cer­tainly can be de­scribed as an ‘up and down’ bowler. With not a sin­gle bowler in the team, that can be de­scribed as a world class bowler it will be good for West Indies cricket if this tour can pro­duce such a player.

As for the bat­ting, open­ing bats­man Braith­waite will have to give the team a solid start. Good in­nings from Braith­waite will en­able the other ‘flashes in the pond’ to put to­gether some runs on the score­board. The Hope brothers will not be play­ing on home soil and it will be in­ter­est­ing to see them es­tab­lish them­selves in the team. Both Hope brothers as ex­pected were given a chance to play in the open­ing tour match against Es­sex county club. Both reach dou­ble fig­ures be­fore per­ish­ing with their stumps shat­tered. Black­wood and Chase are two very good young­sters and if they could get some runs con­sis­tently then the score board will look bet­ter.

The cap­tain is speak­ing about a fam­ily. Well the dress­ing room and the ‘bars and wa­ter­holes’ are speak­ing about a ‘Bar­ba­dian and in­su­lar fam­ily.’

We would like to see the team ‘gel’ and play as a Caribbean unit, but this could only hap­pen with a leader who could lead by ex­am­ple.

As for Eng­land, their team is un­der an as­tute cricket cap­tain Joe Root. Root is highly rated as one of the best test bats­man in the world. In the present test se­ries, Root hit a mas­sive hun­dred and a mas­ter­ful half cen­tury in the first and sec­ond test match to en­able his team to beat the pow­er­ful South Africans.

For­mer Eng­land cap­tain Alis­ter Cook is con­cen­trat­ing heav­ily on his bat­ting and he would be look­ing to score heav­ily against the West Indies. Keaton Jen­nings and Tom West­ley are two new play­ers and both of them are ca­pa­ble of mak­ing runs at the top of the or­der.

The bat­ting all-rounders Ben Stokes, Moen Ali and Jonny Bairstow are all ca­pa­ble of de­stroy­ing any bowl­ing at­tack. Eng­land bat­ting could be very wor­ri­some for the West Indies bowlers.

Eng­land bowl­ing lineup i s very strong. Jimmy An­der­son, St u a r t Broad and the new ‘ kid’ on the ‘ block’ Toby Rol and- Jones, along with Stokes are ca­pa­ble of bundling out the visi­tors cheaply, while Moen Ali, who is fresh from his test hat-trick against South Africa will be dif­fi­cult for the West Indies to deal with in Eng­land.

The Test se­ries be­tween Eng­land and the West indies could very well be a white­washed se­ries.

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