KINGSTON — West Indies head coach Ottis Gibson and captain Dwayne Bravo are both convinced the regional side will rebound from recent disappointments and challenge strongly in the upcoming CELKON Mobile Cup tri-nation tournament, which bowls off Friday.
The Windies made an early exit from the ICC Champions Trophy in England and Wales a fortnight ago, but the aim is to show the fighting spirit and lift the winners’ trophy when they face Sri Lanka and India in the coming weeks.
An upbeat home side arrived in Jamaica yesterday afternoon and had a full training session this morning at Sabina Park. They will have another training session on tomorrow morning. Their opening match will be against the Sri Lankans on Friday at the same venue.
“We are disappointed at how we exited the Champions Trophy, but I think those who looked at the competition closely say that we really gave it our best shot,” said Bravo.
“We are now looking forward to this CELKON Mobile Tri-Nation series, which should be a very tough series, to see if we can make amends and, hopefully, make our fans proud once again.
“We know our fans really want to see us do well and we really want to do well and repay that faith they have in us. We always get great support from the fans here in Jamaica and we are looking forward to a great start this weekend.”
India are coming off their capture of the ICC Champions Trophy while Sri Lanka reached the semi-finals.
Bravo believes West Indies have the strength in the squad to get the job done.
“We have a balanced squad with a lot of match-winners, who myself and the coaching staff believe can get the job done,” the experienced 29-year-old all-rounder noted.
“As to which players we pick to play each match, that will come down to the opposition and the match conditions on the day.”
Like Bravo, Gibson remained confident about the team’s chances in the CELKON Mobile Cup, which will feature seven matches in two weeks.
Gibson, who has been at the helm for over three years now and has played a vital role in the team’s progress, said it was now crucial West Indies used their recent disappointments as motivation to succeed.
“We were a bit unfortunate with what happened in England. I think we were starting to shape up to do well in that tournament … it’s just to kick on from there,” said Gibson.
“It’s to put those little mistakes that we made in England, put them away. We felt we had a good opportunity to win that tournament and we want to win this one and prove ourselves right.”
He added: “It is good to be back home and it is the first time we are playing a tri-nation tournament in quite a while so we are looking for positive results and we are looking to win it.
“There’s more balance in the side and we are starting to believe a lot more that we can be the team that we want to be. We are starting to show the application and hopefully we will continue to show that development and progress.”
Schedule of matches – 10:30 a.m. (local time)
Friday, June 28: West Indies vs Sri Lanka — Sabina Park, Kingston, Jamaica
Sunday, June 30: West Indies vs India — Sabina Park
Tuesday, July 2: India vs Sri Lanka — Sabina Park
Friday, July 5: West Indies vs India — Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain, Trinidad
Sunday, July 7: West Indies vs Sri Lanka — Queen’s Park Oval
Tuesday, July 9: Sri Lanka vs India — Queen’s Park Oval
Thursday, July 11: The Final: 1st vs 2nd — Queen’s Park Oval (windiescricket)