West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran believes the team must be better at managing the game’s big moments following a 68-run loss to India in the first of five T20 internationals on Friday.

Despite switching formats, the Caribbean team failed to snap its losing streak against India after skipper Rohit Sharma's quickfire 64, from 44 deliveries, laid the platform for India to post a challenging 190.  The team was also boosted by an unbeaten 41 off just 19 balls from Dinesh Karthik.

In pursuit of the target, the Windies failed to put any significant partnerships together and the highest individual total of 20 came from Shamarh Brooks.

Their struggles were in large part due to the efforts of India’s spin trio of Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, and Ravi Bishnoi who combined to stifle the Windies at the crease.   In total, the trio picked up five wickets.

“We are going to have games like this where we are going to just get shut out. The batsmen did get starts but we didn’t capitalize on those starts.  We didn’t win the big moments today and it’s as simple as that,” Pooran said following the game.

The team also made changes to its typical batting order, with all-rounder Jason Holder promoted to three.  He was, however, dismissed without scoring by Ravindra Jadeja.

“It was good for us to come out here and experiment a bit.  The guys did show up but we need to hold our nerve in big moments, especially when the pressure is on, we need to embrace it,” he added.

 

The West Indies have now lost seven consecutive white ball games after going down by 68 runs to India in the first of five T20 Internationals at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba on Friday.

West Indian captain Nicholas Pooran won the toss and elected to field first.

India’s opening pair of returning captain Rohit Sharma and Suryakumar Yadav got the ball rolling, putting on a partnership of 44 before Yadav was dismissed by Jason Holder for a quick 16-ball 24.

Captain Sharma provided a steady head for the Indians throughout the majority of the innings as he lost partners Shreyas Iyer (0), Rishabh Pant (14) and Hardik Pandya (1) before eventually being dismissed in the 15th over for a top score of 64 to leave the tourists 127-5.

They eventually got up to 190-6 off their 20 overs thanks to cameos from Ravindra Jadeja (16) and Ravichandran Ashwin (13) as well as a brilliant closing effort of 41 from just 19 balls including four fours and two sixes from Dinesh Karthik.

Left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein was brilliant for the hosts with an economical 1-14 from his four overs while opening pacer Obed McCoy took 1-30 from his four.

The West Indian reply got off to a fast start thanks to openers Kyle Mayers and Shamarh Brooks as the pair sped to 22-0 in the second over before Mayers fell for 15 to pacer Arshdeep Singh.

The Windies then tried to gamble, sending Jason Holder up the order to bat at three but this move fell flat as he was next to go, bowled by Ravindra Jadeja for a duck.

The innings then ground to a virtual halt as Brooks (20), Nicholas Pooran (18), Rovman Powell (14), Shimron Hetmyer (14), Akeal Hosein (11) and Odean Smith (0) all perished to, eventually, leave the Windies needing 90 off 21 balls for victory.

Keemo Paul and Alzarri Joseph then finished not out on 19 and 5, respectively, to end the innings on 122-8, 68 runs short.

It was a balanced bowling effort by the Indians with Ravichandran Ashwin (2-22 off four overs), Arshdeep Singh (2-24 off four overs) and Ravi Bishnoi (2-26 off four overs) all contributing well.

West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran insists the team will relish the challenge against India and is determined to be more successful as the tour shifts to the T20 format.

The regional team is coming off a difficult run of matches in the ODI format where it lost its last nine in a row.  Recent history suggests the Windies will, however, be far more competitive in the T20 format.  The team is in fact coming off a 3-0 sweep of Bangladesh in 20 overs, before experiencing a reversal of fortunes in the ODIs.

The team has also typically competed well against India in the format, but it is the Indians who have ended up with the lion's share of the victories in recent years.  Pooran is hoping that particular statistic will be changed. 

“The guys are always up for the challenge against India, they want to show the world what they are made of as well,” Pooran told members of the media on Thursday.

“For some reason, we just turn up and perform well, unfortunately, we haven’t been getting the series wins and that is something that we need to happen.  We don’t want to perform as players and the team is still losing.  So, the only thing on our mind is to find a way to be successful.”

The West Indies and India will square off for five matches beginning on Friday.

West Indies coach Phil Simmons has backed the One Day International (ODI) team to eventually pull things together after a number of discouraging recent results.

The ODI format has been the team’s least productive over the last few years, having won just 9 of 51 series played in the last 10 years, which amounts to a 17 percent win rate.  In the last three consecutive series, the regional team has failed to win a game after being swept aside 3-0 by Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India.

In three of the last four matches against Bangladesh and then India, however, the team at least managed to put in strong batting performances despite losing the match.

“The first two games we batted the 50 overs and looked like we understood what batting 50 overs was about.  I think that’s a step forward and we will just have to keep trying to move forward with that,” Simmons told members of the media on Wednesday.

“The bowlers have been doing it in a few games and not the batsmen.  Now it’s turned around.  So, we’ve got to get everything together.  The one plus is that the fielding keeps getting better and better, so we have to put everything together,” he added.

“Everything takes time, the guys have been playing together more and more and we are having a squad play together more and more.  That’s what happened with the Test team, the guys played together for a while and now we are seeing the fruits of that.  Let’s see what happens with the ODI team.”

 

Cricket West Indies (CWI) Men’s Senior Selection Panel on Thursday named 16 players for the upcoming Goldmedal T20I Cup, powered by Kent Water Purifiers against India and for the three-match T20 International (T20I) Series against New Zealand.

The West Indies and India Men’s teams will go head-to-head in the five-match series starting Friday, July 29, with the first-ever West Indies Senior Men’s team match to be played at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy. The five-match series runs until August 7 with games being played in Trinidad, St Kitts and Florida.

The same pool of 16 players will then travel to Jamaica for the three-match T20I Series against New Zealand at Sabina Park from August 10-14.

An official squad of 13 players will be nominated ahead of each match.

The Selection Panel recalled left-handed batter Shimron Hetmyer. Left-arm fast bowler Sheldon Cottrell is recovering from injury and unavailable for selection, while allrounder Fabian Allen is also unavailable for personal reasons.

“We welcome back Hetmyer and it is good to see him again in West Indies colours. He will fortify the batting group and with his experience and adaptability we have a ‘finisher’ who can add value and win matches for the team and delight the supporters,” said lead selector, The Most Hon Dr Desmond Haynes.

“Everything we do, we have to take into consideration we have a big tournament coming up later this year, which is the ICC T20 World Cup, so we are planning and gearing up towards that event. It is good to give the players some exposure to the international stage and look to find the right combinations,” Haynes added.

FULL SQUAD

Nicholas Pooran (Captain)

Rovman Powell (Vice Captain)

Shamarh Brooks

Dominic Drakes

Shimron Hetmyer

Jason Holder

Akeal Hosein

Alzarri Joseph

Brandon King

Kyle Mayers

Obed McCoy

Keemo Paul

Romario Shepherd

Odean Smith

Devon Thomas

Hayden Walsh Jr.

 

Rohit Sharma returns to lead India when a five-match Twenty20 International series against West Indies starts on Friday.

India's captain was rested for the 3-0 one-day international whitewash of the Windies, but will be back in action at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy,

Shikhar Dhawan skippered the tourists as his fellow opener was given a rest for the 50-over contests.

Rohit will expect India to maintain their momentum when the series gets under way in Tarouba, Trinidad, with the T20 World Cup in Australia on the horizon.

India have won five and drawn one of their past six series in the shortest format, beating England most recently.

They are top of the rankings and have shown their strength in depth amid a hectic schedule.

Jasprit Bumrah and Yuzvendra Chahal have been rested for this series along with out-of-sorts former captain Virat Kohli, but the likes of Ravichandran Ashwin and Kuldeep Yadav are back.

West Indies beat Bangladesh 2-0 in their last T20I series, but India consigned them to a 3-0 clean sweep in February.

Nicholas Pooran has endured a difficult start to his tenure as Windies white-ball skipper and his side face another big challenge in a series that includes two matches in Florida.

Yadav primed for more heroics

Suryakumar Yadav made a match-winning 117 when India beat England in the T20I decider at Trent Bridge.

With fierce competition in the middle order and Kohli absent, Yadav will see this series as another opportunity to cement his spot.

Windies batters must show consistency

Despite being beaten by India in all three ODIs, West Indies twice posted over 300.

They must show a consistency that has been lacking as they build towards the World Cup, led by Pooran, who has certainly not been short of runs as skipper and was man of the series in the T20I series success over the Tigers.

West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran and Brandon King each fell short of a half-century as the team failed to halt the momentum of India who completed a 3-0 ODI sweep over the West Indies on Wednesday.

In the rain-affected fixture, India triumphed by a massive 119-runs via the Duckworth Lewis method, after Shubman Gill’s 98 anchored the team’s first innings effort of 225 for 3, in a reduced 36 overs.

In pursuit, the West Indies never really got things out of first gear.  As early as the second over, Mohammed Siraj dealt the men in maroon an early blow, after getting rid of Kyle Mayers and Shamarh Brooks in the same over, which left the team struggling at 0 for 2.

King and Shai Hope put on a 47-run stand to give the team a fighting chance.  Yuzvendra Chahal struck to end the partnership, however, after Hope was stumped for 22. King then partnered with Pooran to keep the recovery going, but that momentum was ended when Axar Patel's arm-ball bowled King for 42, leaving the team at 5-103.

With a climbing run rate the struggles of Keacy Carty, who was next at the crease, put pressure on Pooran to keep up with the run rate. Carty was put out of his misery after going down the pitch to Shardul and edging the ball onto the stumps, making a total of 5 from 17 balls.

With the rate needed climbing to 10 an over Pooran was dismissed for 42 when he was caught at mid-on off by Prasidh Krishna.  Chahal ended with the best figures for India after taking 4 for 17.

West Indies batsman Shimron Hetmyer is expected to return to the regional team in short order, having recently passed a fitness test.

The player has been practicing with the Windies team during its ongoing One Day International series against India, despite not being named as a member of the ODI squad.  The way will now be clear for Hetmyer to return to active duty having passed a fitness test on Tuesday.

The talented batsman's struggle with his fitness has been well documented over the last few years.  Hetmyer missed out on two series against Sri Lanka in the span of a year, and again in January of this year against Ireland and England.  He could now be on course to be selected for the upcoming five-match T20 series, which will get underway on Friday.  West Indies captain Nicholas Pooran is delighted with the player’s impending return to the fold.

“We hope to have him back soon, I think he passed the fitness test this morning, which is wonderful news, so we expect to have him back as soon as possible,” Pooran told members of the media on Tuesday.

Hetmyer has not represented the regional team since November of last year, against Australia.

West Indies batsman Shai Hope says his success in the One-Day International format is down to his desire to spend time at the crease.

Hope celebrated his 100th ODI on Sunday at the Queen’s Park Oval with a brilliant 115 in a losing effort against India, his 13th century in the format to go along with 20 fifties.

The Barbadian, who now has 4193 ODI runs at an excellent average of 49.91, became the fourth West Indian and 10th player to ever score a century in their 100th ODI. Ramnaresh Sarwan, Gordon Greenidge and Chris Gayle are the other West Indians to achieve this feat while New Zealand’s Chris Cairns, Pakistan’s Mohammad Yousuf, Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara, England’s Marcus Trescothick, Australia’s David Warner and India’s Shikhar Dhawan make up the rest of that exclusive club.

“I would just say my desire to bat as long as I can,” was Hope’s response in a post-match press conference when asked what he attributes his performances to.

“I love batting and I always want to stay at the crease and do whatever I can for the team’s benefit. Just the desire and hunger to stay out there in the middle,” he added.

Current opponents India have become somewhat of a favorite opponent for Hope as the numbers would suggest. He now has 855 runs at an average of 47.50 with three hundreds and four fifties in 22 matches against the 2011 World Cup winners.

“They’re a very good opposition. I think playing against the best in the world usually brings out the best in myself. It’s something I’ve always looked forward to growing up and playing regional cricket so, it’s just one of those challenges that I try to grasp with both hands and, hopefully, I can continue that trend,” Hope said.

So, how does Hope plan to keep up this level of performance?

“The key is to try to keep learning. You never know it all so it’s just about trying to learn and develop as best as I can. It’s all about adding to your game,” he said.

Hope’s next chance to add to his tally of runs will come when the West Indies play for pride in the third ODI against India on Wednesday in Port-of-Spain.

 

 

 

 

Shai Hope scored a magnificent century but it was not enough to prevent the West Indies from going 2-0 down after a thrilling two-wicket victory with two balls to spare at the Queens Park Oval in Trinidad on Sunday.

The win means the home side’s seven-match losing streak continues as they ceded the three-match series to India with one match remaining.

India started slowly but eventually got the measure of the West Indies attack with half-centuries from Shreyas Ayer (63) and Sanju Samson (54) but it was Axar Patel whose quick-fire 64 from 35 balls that powered India over the line with a straight six from the fourth ball of the final over bowled by Kyle Mayers.

Mayers finished with 2-48 from 7.4 overs. Alzarri Joseph bowled well for his 2-46 from 10. Jayden Seales proved economical taking 1-40 from his allotment.

Earlier, after the West Indies had won the toss and chose to bat first, Hope scored 115 as the West Indies posted 311-6 from their 50 overs.

After sharing in an opening stand of 65 with Kyle Mayers who made 39, Hope also featured in a second-wicket partnership of 62 with Shamarh Brooks who contributed 32 before he too was dismissed after getting a start.

Brandon King made nought from five balls before Hope and Captain Nicolas Pooran shared in a 127-run partnership for the fourth wicket that got the West Indies back on track for another score over 300. Pooran was eventually dismissed for 74 with the West Indies positioned at 280-5 in the 44th over.

Hope finally fell in the 49th over, caught in the deep trying to hit over the long-off boundary as the West Indies' rate of scoring dipped. The home side managed 31 off the next six overs while also losing the wickets of Rovman Powell for 13 and Romario Shepherd for 14, something that West Indies would come to regret.

Shardul Thakur was the pick of the Indian bowlers with 3-54 from his seven overs but India’s ability to restrict the West Indies' scoring in the death overs was largely due to the excellent bowling of Mohammad Siraj, who ended wicket-less but who the West Indies batters found difficult to get away in the final three overs.

 

 

 

 

West Indies batsman Brandon King believes there is plenty of encouragement to be drawn from the team’s batting performance despite a 3 runs loss to India in the first One Day International series on Friday.

King made a crucial 54 from 66 balls as the Windies attempted to chase down India’s total of 308.  Despite eventually falling short of the target, the performance was one of the team’s best in several ODIs,  particularly on the back of a poor showing against Bangladesh.

In addition to King, Kyle Mayers added a half-century, while the lower order pair of Akeal Hosein and Romario Shepherd added a valuable 53-run partnership, which got the team close.  King himself formed part of two half-century partnerships, the first with Shamarh Brooks, then Nicholas Pooran.

“We always believe that if we bring a game down to the final five overs we have guys that can chase down a total.  Shepherd and Akeal showed that today (Friday), we were always in the game.  We would have liked some of the early wickets not to fall so we could have some batsmen at the end but that’s part of cricket,” King said.

“It’s just our batting formula and how we want to play cricket.  I think bringing down the game to the last ball, chasing 300 plus, was very good for us, another day we would have gotten over the line.”

The West Indies will attempt to level the series when they play India in the second ODI on Sunday.

A late attacking onslaught from Romario Shepherd and Akeal Hosein proved to be inadequate as the West Indies came up short by 3 runs, against India, in a thrilling start to the One Day International series.

After a solid top order partnership of 117 from Shamarh Brooks and Kyle Mayers, following the loss of Shai Hope, the Windies found themselves needing 120 off the last 15 overs and with seven batsmen in reserve.

Shardul Thakur, however, checked that momentum after taking two wickets in two overs. The pacer removed both Brooks and Mayers.  Unlike the previous series, however, the Windies managed to keep putting partnerships together.  Brandon King and Nicholas Pooran then kept the score ticking over for the regional team with a 51-run stand.

Pooran was dismissed by Mohammed Siraj in the 36th over, and Yuzvendra Chahal lifted Indian spirits even higher when he removed Rovman Powell. King, Hosein, and Shepherd though, continued to take the fight to the India bowling line-up. King stitched together another fifty-run stand with Akeal Hosein before he was dismissed.

Hosein and Shepherd seemed determined to bring things over the line.  Hosein anchored from one end while Shepherd attacked from the other.  They kept going into the last three overs, hammering Siraj for 11 in the 48th and Prasidh for 12 in the 49th. The equation came down to 15 off Siraj’s last over but the bowler held his nerves, conceding 11 runs off and keeping Shepherd largely silent.  In pursuit of 308 for 6, the West Indies got to 305 for 6.

Stand-in captain Shikhar Dhawan helped India snatch a nervy three-run victory against West Indies in Port of Spain as the hosts suffered another home ODI defeat.

Looking to overhaul India's 308-7 at Queen's Park Oval, West Indies were 133-1 at one stage, ideally placed to bounce back from their recent 3-0 drubbing by Bangladesh.

Yet they could not keep up the strong early running, finishing on 305-6 to lose the opener in the three-match series, a seventh consecutive ODI defeat to India at this ground.

Opener Dhawan, captaining India in the absence of the resting Rohit Sharma and a host of senior stars, was named man of the match. He provided the backbone of the tourists' innings but fell frustratingly short of a century when he was caught by Shamarh Brooks for 97 as he looked to cut away Gudakesh Motie to the ropes.

Shubman Gill had made 64 in a first-wicket stand of 119 before he was run out by a direct hit from home captain Nicholas Pooran, and it was Pooran who took a fine catch at cover off Motie's bowling to send Shreyas Iyer (54) on his way.

In the hosts' reply, Brooks made 46 and Kyle Mayers scored a sharp 75 before falling when he reached outside off stump at a wide-ish ball and got a nick through to wicketkeeper Sanju Samson.

Pooran cracked Prasidh Krishna for two consecutive sixes in the 32nd over to raise a slowing tempo, but he fell for 25 soon after. When Brandon King was caught in the deep for 54 in the 45th over, with 57 still required, that looked to be West Indies' hopes at an end.

There was a flourish though, and they were left needing 15 from the final over, with Akeal Hosein (32 not out) and Romario Shepherd (38no) narrowly failing to delivery the necessary heroics.

IYER LANDMARK

Iyer's 54 took him to 1,001 runs in ODIs, making him the equal-third fastest India batter to reach the 1,000-run milestone, alongside Navjot Singh Sidhu who also got there in 25 innings. Only Virat Kohli and Dhawan (24 innings each) reached four figures in fewer innings.

INDIA EXTEND DOMINANCE

India have now won 11 of their 12 most recent ODIs against West Indies, with the only loss coming in Chennai in December 2019. They have won the last four bilateral ODI series they have contested against West Indies in the Caribbean, and can seal a fifth in a row when game two takes place at the same ground on Sunday.

Former West Indies opener Philo Wallace described the feeling of watching the West Indies batsmen struggle against spin bowling as “disheartening.”

“It’s very disheartening to see our batsmen continue to struggle against spin,” said Wallace on the Mason & Guest radio show in Barbados on Tuesday.

The West Indies suffered an embarrassing 0-3 series defeat against Bangladesh last week at Providence in Guyana, a surface known to favor spin bowling.

“They have to find a method of how to play slow bowling. I find it very uncomfortable that our batsmen don’t seem to understand how to play on that type of surface,” said Wallace, who played seven Tests and 33 ODIs from 1997-2000.

The inability to play spin meant that the hosts were unable to bat out the full 50 overs in any of the matches, something Wallace said is not acceptable.

“You can’t consistently get bowled out inside 50 overs. When you find yourself three or four wickets down inside the first 20 overs, you’re going to struggle. They’re not getting the starts from the openers. The middle order is struggling and leaving it to some sluggers at the bottom,” he said.

When questioned about a solution to the problem, Wallace pointed to something that has been an issue for the West Indies in limited overs cricket for more than a decade, rotation of the strike.

“You have to be fit and you’ve got to work around the ball and know your partner at the other end. When you get your ones and twos up front, it will make it easier for the guys at the back end,” Wallace said.

He further emphasized his point by highlighting an innings played by South African Rassie van der Dussen against England on Tuesday where he scored 134 off 117 balls hitting only 10 fours and no sixes. South Africa hit no sixes in their innings and were able to score 333-5 from their 50 overs before bowling England out for 271.

 

 

 

 

 

West Indies coach Phil Simmons admits he is pleased to welcome Jason Holder back to the fold after the all-rounder was recently rested due to load management considerations.

The 30-year-old former captain has not represented the regional team since March of this year.  Following his return from the India Premier League (IPL), it was announced that the player would be left out of the team, for the upcoming series, considering a recent heavy workload.

As a result, Holder has missed the team’s One Day International tours against The Netherlands, and Pakistan and a recent visit of Bangladesh.  The team easily won the first series but could certainly have used Holder’s experience and explosive all-round play as they struggled to find their footing against both Pakistan and Bangladesh.

The player is once again available ahead of the team’s series against India, which begins on Friday and Simmons admits he is impressed by what he has witnessed in training so far.

“It’s good to have him back,” Simmons told members of the media on Wednesday.

“He looks fresh, he had some time out of the game.  He has been bowling well the last two days and batting well too so it’s good to have him back.”

  The West Indies and India will face off in three ODIs.

 

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