Friday was one of the WI's worst performances
From the moment the West Indies walked out to play, it looked like a losers parade and they didn’t let anyone down. England didn’t even need 35 overs to overhaul WI’s total of 212 all out made in 44.4 overs.
WI had better days but Friday was not one of them. It was one of their worst performances as Indian commentator Ajit Agarkar tweeted.
WI in denial?
Is the team in a touch of denial about their form? Captain Jason Holder said, “I don’t think we put enough runs on the board. The toss was very crucial, but we did a pretty decent job in the Powerplay.” Seriously?
The first wicket went at 4 runs. It took 2.5 overs to reach double figures. Gayle did open up a bit but his 36 ended when the team score was only 54, the run rate 4.15 after 12 overs.
This isn’t a decent job when you are playing the top contender.
He admitted though: “Our batsmen need to take a bit more ownership in the middle overs. We probably didn’t read the pace of the pitch. Defending 213 wasn’t easy.”
Eng confident but injured
England’s century-maker Joe Root who becoming the MoM was a matter of fact. “It was good to take the opportunity and use the conditions. The guys helped build big partnerships. It’s just nice to get some time in the park. We pride ourselves in having our basics covered.” -- straight forward confession of a serious Cup contender.
England’s worry is injury as both Eoin Morgan and Jason Roy have problems. Both have to wait another 24-48 hours before getting the green light to play.
On his team he was succinct. “I think we had a really good day at the office today. The way the bowlers stuck to plans on that surface was outstanding. Root has had an absolute day out.”
England plays Afghanistan next and Morgan said that as they have struggled against them before their research team is on the job. Of course, an upset would be great but the way this Cup has been rolling, predictability reigns.
A boring Cup?
Audience interest is already dwindling with some saying that this is the most boring Cup after 2007 (?). After a few interesting matches in the early stages, nothing serious has happened except the very upsetting weather. The tournament looks quite damp.
West Indies is finally saying good-bye to its flamboyant dark horse image in this cup.
Once it meant everything to the once colonized world when the Caribbean boys took on the colonizers and whacked them proper. Not much of that anymore.
WI next plays Bangladesh who after today’s performance can’t be feeling too nervous though when it comes to Bangladesh, one never can tell. It could be an upset on either side. Maybe it will liven if not cheer things up.
Afsan Chowdhury is a journalist and researcher.