Fresh guard

Estwick looking for better from Windies in St Kitts

West Indies ran hot and cold during the Guyana leg of the Tri-Nations One-Day International Series that includes South Africa and Australia.

Now with the series set to resume this weekend in St Kitts, recently appointed bowling coach Roddy Estwick said his charges are aware of where they went wrong against Australia and will be seeking to improve.

West Indies beat South Africa by four wickets in the opening game of the series last Friday but then produced a meek batting performance in their second outing against World champions Australia, to slump to a six-wicket defeat last Sunday.

Coach Roddy Estwick is looking forward to improvement from his team’s batsmen.
Coach Roddy Estwick is looking forward to improvement from his team’s batsmen.

“It’s a collective thing. We’re all in it together. We wouldn’t say it is the bowlers or the batsmen that have let us down,” said Estwick, who replaced bowling legend Sir Curtly Ambrose in the position.

“We haven’t played well as a team in the last game and we know the areas we need to improve. We need to get partnerships, it’s 50-over cricket.

“Once we can get partnerships and someone in the top four gets a big score, then we’ll turn it around. There’s no doubt about that.”

In the opening encounter, West Indies bowlers led by resurgent off-spinner Sunil Narine, undermined the Proteas’ batting on a slow, low track at the Providence National Stadium, dismissing them for 188.

And after being dismissed for a disappointing 116 against the Aussies, Narine starred again with the ball taking two wickets for 26 runs to follow his six-wicket haul against the Proteas.

Estwick, a former Barbados Pride coach and West Indies A seamer, said he had put a huge emphasis on discipline among his bowlers.

“That is something I have stressed big on; that we must reduce the extras and reduce the boundary balls. If you look at the extras, there were five in the first game which was very, very good and there was one extra in the last game so those are areas we’re trying to improve,” Estwick pointed out.

“If we reduce the boundary balls as well –– we’re trying to stop the opposition from gaining momentum going forward –– so we’re trying to cut out that first-ball four which gives the momentum going into the over or the last-ball four which the momentum going into the next over.

“So the players know what we’re trying to do and once we continue to work, we can achieve it.”

All three teams will be hoping for better batting conditions when they take to the middle at the Warner Park venue. And Estwick said this change would also call for a recalibration on the part of the bowlers.

“Guyana is a different surface, a different pitch and when we go to St Kitts it will be a different pitch as well and you’ve got to rise to the challenge as a team and as a collective unit and that’s what we’re working to do,” he said.

West Indies take on the Australians again in their next game on Monday. The Aussies and the South Africans will clash this Saturday.

Source: (CMC)

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