Jason Holder, the Windies captain, has managed to find some positives out of the drubbing his team got at the hands of the Indian team in the first ODI of the five-match series in Guwahati.
There were two things on which Jason Holder repeatedly stressed on before and after the first ODI. First thing was Windies consistently getting to at least 300-320.
"I felt 320 was probably around on par or a little below par. Having said that, had we taken a wicket or two, got Virat or Rohit, it could have been a different game," said Holder on Tuesday (October 23) ahead of the second ODI in Vizag.
"It's a tough game in the sense where you put tough runs on the board and you never know if it's enough. Your bowling obviously will dictate if you've got enough runs on the board.”
He further added, "When you play limited-overs cricket in this day and age in these conditions, it is very important to use the new ball. Wickets early on stem the flow of runs. If we can get two-three wickets up front, it puts us in good stead and we can get into their middle-order. Obviously we didn't get the wickets we were looking for. You must give credit for the way Virat and Rohit played as well. I think in that context, you need to be a little disciplined and when we bat we need to be more clinical. For example, Rohit and Kohli went the distance. If any of our batters get in, they need to go the distance, capitalise on the opportunity created and make a name for themselves."
He also praised Shimron Hetmyer’s brilliant century and said, "Hetty (Hetmyer) batted at 5 and got a hundred, Powell opened the batting and got a fifty. I think those guys got in and would've been nice if both of them batted a little longer and I think to get 320 in our first run out here is a positive for us. We can only build on that," said Holder. "The challenge is to repeat it or surpass it. We've all seen how the conditions are here in India, the scores in limited-overs cricket here are quite high so you've got to be hitting that 300 barrier more often than not. And sometimes a par score can be 320, 340, maybe 350. And you've got to bowl ridiculously well to come and defend it. I think it's a positive to see we batted all 50 overs as well. We've been critical in the past not utilising every delivery, so it's really good to see our batters put up their hands and get a good knock."
The second thing that Holder stressed was to get into India's middle order which is quite untested given the bulk of runs that the top order has scored.
"Our spinners didn't do as well as we would have liked in the last game. Credit to the two Indians who played outstanding knocks. I felt Bishoo came into his own in the second spell. He got the wicket of Kohli, which is crucial for his confidence. It's important for him to be a bit more expressive and look to take wickets. Nurse just needs to just build more pressure and take one or two wickets in the middle overs. The wicket might suit a little bit of spin. Hopefully, whoever is picked delivers,” he said.
Holder concluded, "We have to manage our players as best as possible. These are pretty closely scheduled games. It's just a matter of ensuring our players are as fresh as possible. For this tour, we just want to give everyone an opportunity. It's a matter of seeing everyone and giving them a chance to showcase what they can produce at this level. Hopefully, everyone gets a game and does well."