Legends urge WI to start Joseph in second ODI
SHARJAH, UAE (CMC): AST-BOWLING LEGEND Waqar Younis and legendary former captain Sir Vivian Richards believe struggling West Indies should turn to teenaged fast bowler Alzarri Joseph for today’s second one-day international (ODI) against Pakistan here.
Waqar, in particular, argued that the Windies seam attack was sorely lacking in pace, and the inclusion of the 19-year-old Joseph for his ODI debut would add a muchneeded spark and also provide support for the only other genuine fast bowler, Shannon Gabriel.
“You need to put pressure in a bowler rather than an all-rounder,” said Waqar, who took 373 wickets in 87 Tests.
“Gabriel bowled a beautiful spell to begin with [in the opening ODI on Friday], but then, after that, things didn’t really go well because the other was leaking runs, so it’s very easy pickings from the other end, and it becomes very difficult for even one fast bowler who’s quick to really carry on doing it.”
Gabriel dismissed captain Azhar Ali with the first delivery of the game, but Pakistan dominated proceedings thereafter to motor to 284 for nine off their allotted 49 overs.
In reply, West Indies slumped to 175 all out in the 39th over to go down by 111 runs under the Duckworth/Lewis method.
Joseph was a stand-out at the Youth World Cup in Bangladesh earlier this year and was subsequently handed his Test debut against India in the third Test in St Lucia. Alzarri Joseph
Waqar said having seen the Antiguan bowl in that game, he was convinced he would bring much-needed quality to the Windies attack.
“You probably need Alzarri Joseph. He’s a youngster who swings the ball,” said Waqar.
“I saw him in one of the Test matches against India. He bowled with some rapid pace and swung the ball, so why not throw him in? You saw it [on Friday] when you played with eight, nine batters and you still lost the game and lost it with ease, so I feel you should bring the youngster in and ask him to bowl with the new ball and try to pick your early wickets.”
He added: “At the moment, what I saw with [medium pacers] (Jason) Holder and (Carlos) Brathwaite, there is really nothing additional on offer.”
Sir Viv, the most dominant batsman of his era and who, like Waqar, now serves as a television analyst for the series, said Joseph could only improve the West Indies attack.
“There’s nothing to lose in playing Alzarri Joseph. He really can’t be worse than what we’ve seen. Let’s be fair.”