Wellington | West Indies displayed all the familiar faults which have plagued them during the cricket World Cup in a quarter-final capitulation to New Zealand at the Wellington Regional Stadium today.
New Zealand opener Martin Guptill, who scored a tournament record 237 not out in his team’s 393 for six, was dropped on four when Marlon Samuels was slow to react at square leg. The ground fielding was then shoddy with 206 runs conceded in the final 15 overs.
West Indies captured the wickets of New Zealand’s most dangerous batsmen Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson for a total of 45 runs but did not bowl with a consistent line or length once Guptill and Ross Taylor had established a platform.
As the New Zealanders plundered the West Indies’ bowlers, Denesh Ramdin and Darren Sammy, two former captains, could be seen waving the fielders around as well as their young skipper Jason Holder.
Finally, although their batsman blazed away and contributed 16 sixes to a World Cup record of 31 in the match, they found different ways to get out with nobody seemingly able or prepared to play the anchor role necessary to overhaul a daunting total.
West Indies quickly succumbed for 250 off 30.3 overs to lose by 143 runs. ‘Although we’ve had some good games, we’ve had some bad games,’ Holder told the post-match news conference. ‘We’ve never really been consistent, we need to be a lot more consistent than we are at the moment.’
He said Guptill had given a few half-chances which probably should have been taken and his bowlers’ lengths had been variable. ‘We bowled too full and then at the end we didn’t land our yorkers,’ he said.
Asked if he had lost control on the field with other West Indies players signalling to the fielders, Holder said he always tried to get input from his colleagues. ‘When people are set on good pitches it’s difficult to contain them. It was just one of those days when we didn’t execute our yorkers and we paid for it,’ he said.
‘If you were too short it just sat up. In terms of the right length on the pitch you had to be that in-between length and also vary your pace a lot. And what we didn’t do was apply ourselves when we batted but obviously 394 is a big ask.’
Holder said he had been through a lot at the tournament. ‘There’s been a lot of criticism thrown left, right and centre, all over the place,’ he said. ‘I’m proud of myself, the way I’ve stood up. ‘I’m not one to shy from responsibility or duck my head when things get tough.
I expected a tough job when I accepted the captaincy and it’s been a tough time but we’ve had some very good times and I’ve learned a lot in terms of learning to manage our players and trying to get the best of our players. It’s been a challenge but one I’ve truly enjoyed.’
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