Windies bowling legend Curtly Ambrose admits he has an issue with a lack of aggression from current captain Jason Holder but believes the Barbadian remains the best man for the job.

The 27-year-old all-rounder has been in the post since 2015 but has come under heavy pressure in recent weeks, following a dismal performance for the team at ICC World Cup.  Managing just a single win, which came against Pakistan, the regional team finished ninth out of 10 teams.

While the outspoken Ambrose insisted that Holder needed to be more assertive in the post, the pace bowler pointed out that there was a lack of suitable replacements available.

“When you look at the resources it is a very short list so what are your options? You have Jason Holder, you got Craig Brathwaite who is his deputy and who are the others who lead or have led before? Hetmyer led the under-19s so maybe he is one to look at in the future once he can cement himself and get going but there is nobody really. The list is very short so we can’t just give a guy captaincy … because we need to be very careful. I think Jason should just continue for now and then we see what happens,” Ambrose told Antiguan radio show Good Morning Jojo.

“I think he has improved from when he started, so let’s be real, but my thing with Jason Holder is that I think is he may not be aggressive enough as a leader. I think he is a little too laid back because when you’re captain you’re a leader and people should recognize right away that he’s the leader. When you look at the West Indies team you’re not sure who the leader is, so Jason needs to, maybe, be more authoritative or just have some kind of presence so you know that he is the man in charge,” he said.

 

 

West Indies bowling legend Curtly Ambrose has maintained the belief that the regional team should have looked past star batsman Chris Gayle for the regional team’s tour against India.

The 39-year-old opening batsman had initially announced plans to retire from international cricket, following the recently concluded ICC World Cup.

 Gayle, however, changed his stance just ahead of the tournament and indicated he would stay on for the upcoming tour of India as a potential farewell.  Ambrose and a few others, however, believe the World Cup was the perfect time for the veteran to step aside.  The left-hander was, however, included in an ODI squad to face India. 

Despite struggling to make an impact at the World Cup, Gayle was the player of the series in an impressive performance again England in the Caribbean earlier this year.  While lauding Gayle for his contribution to regional cricket, Ambrose insisted it was time for fresh blood.

 “You need them to get better in terms of the Hetmyer and the Pooran and so forth, and Evin Lewis; so, what are you going to do? Let Chris Gayle play for a next four years and then four years later you bring them in, and are they going to get better then? Of course not,” Ambrose told the Antigua Observer.

“If any of the selectors walk around thinking they owe Chris Gayle or anybody anything then something is wrong because that’s not what West Indies cricket is all about; it is about picking your best possible players to take the team forward,” he added.

“Chris Gayle has played for many years and has done extremely well and I have a lot of respect for him but what I am saying is that it is time to move on. People talking about give him a farewell Test match; he hasn’t played Test for five years so what you are telling me is that one of your opening batsmen, whoever he may be, you’re going to tell him to sit this game out and let’s give Chris Gayle a farewell, but that doesn’t make sense.”

 

West Indies bowling legend Curtly Ambrose believes a new generation of cricketers must lose the label of ‘power hitting team’ if they are to take another major step in a positive direction.

Heading into the ongoing ICC World Cup, the Windies were picked as a dark horse by pundits and fans alike, in part due to a powerful batting line.  Several disappointing performances at the crease later, however, the regional team failed to live up to the promise of a truly powerful batting display.  

Despite boasting a few inexperienced players, however, Ambrose believes the team’s issues are down to the ‘boundary first’ mentality of several players.

“It’s not the experience and it’s not technique.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with their skills.  I have said before and I will continue to say that they need to put some more thought into their cricket,” Ambrose told BBC Sound.

If they can think situations through a little bit better they can get over that last hurdle,” he added.

“You have to respect good bowling at times…they have this notion that they are power hitters and they can hit boundaries.  Even if the bowling is really good they sill believe they can blast their way out.  That’s not how cricket is played, you have to respect good bowling.  You wait and you keep the ones and twos going, which they don’t do often.

So when they are not getting the boundaries they are not getting the ones and twos.  So they try even harder to get the boundaries and keep getting out.”

Windies bowling legend Curtly Ambrose has dismissed the idea of veteran batsman Chris Gayle playing what would amount to a farewell Test series against India next month.

The 39-year-old Windies talisman was expected to announce his retirement from international cricket following the ICC World Cup.  The big left-hander, however, seemed to have a change of heart during the tournament and targeted India’s tour of the West Indies as his final appearance.

Never one to shy away from speaking his mind, Ambrose has flatly rejected any type of sentimental appearance for the opener.

“Let me tell you something, one word; nonsense,” Ambrose said of Gayle’s plans for going beyond the World Cup.

Despite scoring 7,214 Test runs, which puts him eighth on the all-time list, and notching two triple centuries, Gayle has not made a Test appearance for the West Indies since 2014.

“He hasn’t played Test cricket for five years and he can barely make it in a One Day International, with long periods in the field.  A Test match is five days, six hours every day and he hasn’t does it for five years,” Ambrose told BBC Sounds.

“What kind of message would it send to one of the opening batsmen? ‘It’s a farewell game for Chris Gayle so sit this one out’ - that is utter nonsense,” he added.

“He should bow out of this World Cup gracefully. He’s done extremely well for West Indies in world cricket, but you bow out. Move forward.”

 

 

 

Windies legend Curtly Ambrose has admitted to being concerned by the form of top-order batsman Darren Bravo, heading into the ICC World Cup later this month.

The 30-year-old Bravo, who only recently rejoined the team following a two-year break, showed plenty of grit in a surprise Test series win for the Windies against England two months ago.  The batsman also made a decent contribution in the preceding ODI series averaging 31.5, including one half-century in two games.

The Trinidad and Tobago national has, however, struggled to continue that traction in the current tri-nation series.  In four matches so far the batsman’s highest score has been 17.  It is those statistics that have Ambrose concerned.

“We must really be concerned about his form because we need him to really come to the party and produce the runs that we know he is capable of doing,” Ambrose said.

“Because as we go deep into this World Cup and in order to get out of the group stages, we can’t rely on one, two or three players. We need a whole team to click or most of the team to click, for us to get out of the group stages,” he added.

“So I am concerned about Darren Bravo’s form but I feel that he’s good enough to get out of that slump and produce the runs for us.”

Legendary West Indies fast bowler Curtly Ambrose has picked the team to make a deep run at the ICC World Cup, which gets under way in England later this month.

The regional team won the first edition of the tournament in 1975 and 1979 and were only narrowly beaten by India in the following edition.  Since then it has been a major barren stretch of sorts having failed to advance to the semi-final stage in seven of the next eight tournaments.  The only exception came in 1996 when the team did manage to make the final four before being narrowly beaten by Australia.  Ambrose, who was a part of that squad, believes the current iteration could at the very least equal that feat.

“Our chances are as good as anybody’s because when you look at cricket in general and like I’ve said to the guys when I was with the team [as a coach], ICC ratings or rankings don’t really count on the field,” Ambrose told the Antigua Observer.

 “In the rankings, you could be one, two or three but it simply means you’re more consistent and you’re winning more games so you get the points to move to the top of the table but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re the better team,” he added.

“We have a decent team but of course, people are going to argue about one or two players which will happen from now until eternity, but I feel we have a good enough team to go deeper into the World Cup.

Our problem is the consistency factor where we would win one game handsomely then maybe lose two or three and then win another one and if you’re so inconsistent then you’re never going to go far. As long as we are consistent in this World Cup, we can spring some surprises and go deep but we have to be consistent,” he said.

West Indies and Leeward Islands fast-bowling royalty, Curtly Ambrose will be joining the cast of Dancing with the Stars Australia next month. 

West Indies fast bowling legend Sir Curtly Ambrose has expressed an interest in taking over as coach of the regional team when Australian Stuart Law departs later this year.

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