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Windies gear up for African challenge

HARARE, Zimbabwe – West Indies coach Hendy Springer has urged his side to be adaptable as they gear up for the challenge of the Tri-Nations Series against Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka starting this week.

With the Caribbean side having not toured the African nation in nearly a decade, Springer said it was important the side was mentally prepared to face whatever conditions presented themselves.

“The pitches were pretty good [back then] for batting. I don’t know now if things have gotten better or deteriorated but we’ve got to [have] an open mind and to be able to accept the conditions and deal with the conditions that will be presented to us,” Springer warned.

West Indies team during their training session in Zimbabawe.

West Indies team during their training session in Zimbabawe.

“The last time we went there we won the one-day series but it’s a bit long now to say we can build on that momentum. The pitches in Zimbabwe and South Africa from my experience are a lot similar … but we’ve got to meet head on whatever confronts us.”

West Indies arrived Saturday following a week-long camp in Potchefstroom, South Africa where Springer said the side were able to rest following the tough tour of the United Arab Emirates, as well as also get their preparation on track.

With the preparation having gone according to plan, Springer said it was now for West Indies to focus on executing their plans in the series.

“The only thing left is to get our minds in the right place to actually perform,” he pointed out.

“We’ve had the benefit of some good opposition and the benefit of some good practice bowlers. I think we’ve done really well as far as preparation is concerned and the only thing left again is to get our minds focused on the job and the responsibilities we are charged with.”

West Indies enter the series on the back of a 3-0 drubbing in the series against Pakistan last month and Springer said they were hoping for better fortunes over the next couple weeks.

“It would be good to win the competition and it would be good for the young players in the side who will be [in Zimbabwe] for the first time and who will actually get a full understanding of what international cricket is all about and what international competition is all about, but this is a critical series to win and to step up that ladder in One-Day Internationals.”

West Indies open their campaign against Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

Source: (CMC)

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