West Indies lost the first Test against the visitors in a very humiliating way. They were outplayed in all the departments and suffered an innings and 92 runs defeat. The match got over in four days and WI couldn’t deliver a commanding performance.
WI was asked to follow-on after they bundled out for 243 in the first innings and Ravichandran Ashwin took 7 for 83 and completely bamboozled the hosts. This was Ashwin’s first five for outside Asia.
With the International Cricket Council mulling a two-tier format to keep interests alive in Test cricket, the rapid decline of West Indies is not good news for once the invincibles of the game. To lose at a ground named after the great Vivian Richards was an irony.
WI is ranked lowly at No.8 in the ICC rankings and with this performance it raises the question of popularity of five day format in the region.
Jason Holder, who as a captain did not lead from the front was not pleased with the performance and blamed it on players for not rising up to the challenge.
We didn’t really bowl well in the first innings. It was a daunting task, trying to chase 560-odd,” said West Indies captain Jason Holder.
“We obviously need to bowl a bit better. Shannon (Gabriel) bowled extremely well; (Devendra) Bishoo was decent. We just need to string together some more dot balls, some more pressure deliveries.” Was quoted as saying by NDTV.
WI had no chance after Indians declared at 566 for 8 in the first innings and the only way they would have competed if they batted well in the first innings and got close to the Indian total.
The team came into the match on the back of performing well in the first half of the year and winning ICC silverware.
Players such as Chris Gayle, Lendl Simmons and Sunil Narine are participating in the CPL and not turning out for WI in the longer format. WICB has to do something break the deadlock and have their top players playing for windies. The team is going through the transition and Holder needs all the help possible from the administration.
India will enjoy a rare day off and like to continue the good work. The team played a near perfect game and apart from couple of players, all the players chipped in and it was a total team effort. Virat Kohli and Ravichandran were the top performers and helped India win comprehensively.
The second Test starts at Jamaica on 30th July.