West Indies cricket team has always been one of my favorite teams in world cricket. Even though I haven’t seen best of west indies team, the stories about their aggressive fast bowlers and fearless batsmen has built great sense of admiration for this team from my childhood. Also players like Brian Lara have been an influence in selecting them as my favorite. It is always a disappointment to watch your team performing poorly, that too for such a long time.
But this tour of India raises some hope for all fans. Darren Bravo seems to be all set to be new hero. Attitude of Kirk Edwards was good. Powell, Barath and couple of others also seems to be promising. Couple of centuries will definitely boost Bravo’s confidence and if he can carry on the form he has the talent to become one of the best batsmen in world cricket. He is stylish to watch, has good temperament and can handle both spinners and fast bowlers really well. He will have to learn to keep his body and mind fit for playing long innings. By the term long I meant a double or triple century innings. Now another guy to look forward is Kirk Edwards. I liked his attitude, he is fearless and positive. He seems to be a good fit at the number three slot. So the middle order seems to have a great future ahead if they work hard together. The main problem is with opening slot. I think presently they are too much defensive . They need at least one attacking opener who can give them good starts and a mental upper hand.
Now having said good words about the batting unit, I don’t feel the same way about the bowling unit. In spin department we cannot rate Bishoo yet. We will have to wait for one year or so to judge his abilities and limitations. Now with pace attack they need some fundamental changes. Given the conditions of pitches and changes in cricket, old fashioned short pitch bowling won’t work to great extent these days. You need at least one genuine swing bowler who can master both conventional and reverse swings to test modern day batsmen. Along with, if you can bring in an aggressive all out attack bowler then the pace attack will be greatly balanced. Swing seems to be most efficient weapons in modern cricket. So West Indies team should find a bowler who can hit the seam on regular basis and move the bowl sideways at a lively pace.
Since there are a number of great players in West Indies history, the young players won’t be short of guidance. I hope with proper guidance and planning they will once again rise to top of the world.