Bruised WI bat­tling to avoid white­wash

Jamaica Gleaner - - TUESDAY SPORTS -

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emi­rates (CMC): REIGN­ING WORLD cham­pi­ons West Indies find them­selves in the un­fa­mil­iar po­si­tion of bat­tling to avoid a white­wash when they clash with Pak­istan in the fi­nal Twenty20 In­ter­na­tional of the three-match se­ries today.

Bat­tered fol­low­ing two bruis­ing de­feats in the open­ing games in Dubai, West Indies will aim for a dra­matic turn­around in or­der to ex­tract some sem­blance of pride from what has other­wise been a hum­bling ex­pe­ri­ence.

The side, which won an un­prece­dented se­cond T20 World Cup last April in In­dia, are yet to dis­play that swag­ger and cap­tain Car­los Brath­waite said now was a good a time as any for his unit to make their pres­ence felt.

“Ev­ery game we play, we go out there to win. Psy­cho­log­i­cally, go­ing into the longer for­mat – the 50 overs – it would do us a hell of a lot of good to get a vic­tory,” Brath­waite said yes­ter­day.

“We need to go out there and do the things we know how to do, do them bet­ter than we did in the first two games, and we’re more than con­fi­dent that we can come out with a win.”

In both games so far, West Indies have suf­fered bat­ting melt­downs. In the open­ing game last Fri­day, they were bun­dled out for 115 paving the way for Pak­istan’s un­com­pli­cated nine-wicket vic­tory.

And in the se­cond game the fol­low­ing day, the Caribbean side botched their run chase in pur­suit of 161, to go down by 16 runs.

“One glar­ing prob­lem that I can see is the bat­ting, es­pe­cially the top or­der bat­ting. We haven’t been mak­ing the most of the first six overs with only the two field­ers out and then it be­came harder and harder [as the in­nings pro­gressed],” he ex­plained.

“In the very first game, we had five wick­ets down ... and then chas­ing 160 [in the se­cond game] and be­ing only 20-odd in the first six overs, it’s go­ing to be a lot more dif­fi­cult es­pe­cially with such huge bound­aries.

“So I think the top or­der bat­ting and the mis­use of the first six overs was our down­fall in the first two games.”

Brath­waite, in only his se­cond se­ries as cap­tain af­ter re­plac­ing the sacked two-time World Cup-win­ning skip­per Dar­ren Sammy, is also yet to fire.


He came to promi­nence fol­low­ing his hero­ics in the T20 World Cup fi­nal against Eng­land, but with scores of nought and eight, he is yet to weigh in with any per­for­mance of note.

Af­ter play­ing an un­changed team in the open­ing games with lit­tle change in the out­come, Brath­waite said se­lec­tors were con­tem­plat­ing us­ing a few new faces for the fi­nal game set for the Sheikh Za­yed Sta­dium.


All-rounder Rov­man Powell and fast bowler Kes­rick Wil­liams are two un­capped players in the squad who could come in while Chad­wick Walton and Test and one-day cap­tain, Ja­son Holder, are also yet to play. SQUADS: PAK­ISTAN – Sar­fraz Ahmed (cap­tain), Shar­jeel Khan, Khalid Latif, Babar Azam, Shoaib Ma­lik, Umar Ak­mal, Mo­ham­mad Nawaz, Imad Wasim, So­hail Tan­vir, Wa­hab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Mo­ham­mad Rizwan, Mo­ham­mad Amir, Rum­man Raees, Saad Nasim.

WEST INDIES – Car­los Brath­waite (cap­tain), Evin Lewis, John­son Charles, An­dre Fletcher , Mar­lon Sa­muels, Dwayne Bravo, Ni­cholas Pooran, Kieron Pol­lard, Sunil Narine, Jerome Tay­lor, Sa­muel Badree, Ja­son Holder, Rov­man Powell, Kes­rick Wil­liams, Chad­wick Walton.

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