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Opinion

What should West Indies defend or amend against India?

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Roar Rookie
21st November, 2019
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The West Indies haven’t won many white-ball series in the past few years.

Before their recent victory over Afghanistan in a three-match ODI series, the West Indies hadn’t won in the 50-over format since 2014. That said, though they whitewashed Afghanistan they lost the subsequent T20 series against them.

As these series happened in Lucknow, the West Indies would have acclimatised to the Indian conditions. This will assist them in their series against India in December, comprising three T20s and three ODIs.

These are some of the areas the West Indies needs to defend and amend.

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ODIs
The West Indies have been dependent on their top-order batsmen. Shai Hope is the only batsman who has performed and scored runs consistently at this position. Therefore he will have to maintain his form against India to create a contest. Further, he was the fourth-highest run-getter in the ODI series last year when they toured India. There’s lots of expectation from him this time as well.

However, Shimron Hetmyer did not look in great form against Afghanistan and Evin Lewis performed hot and cold. Consequently the West Indies may try other options specifically in place of Hetmyer.

Furthermore, they have concerns with their middle-order batsmen as they aren’t scoring many runs. The most consistent performer in the recent past at this position has been Nicholas Pooran. They also tried Roston Chase, who likes to bat in India, against Afghanistan.

The West Indies lose a majority of their wickets in the second powerplay, therefore they would want these batsmen along with others to perform better and save their wickets. This would permit someone like Kieron Pollard or Jason Holder to play their shots freely in the death overs.

T20s
One of the reasons for their losses in the T20 series against India in August and recently against Afghanistan is their top order failing to score runs. Shai Hope didn’t play in the series against India and played only the third T20 against Afghanistan, in which he batted at No. 4 and made a half-century. The West Indies may therefore open with Hope against India.

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The positive for the West Indies in T20s is their bowlers. They have been consistent in taking wickets in the powerplay and are not giving many runs as well. Against Afghanistan they used the slower ball variations very effectively, thus it would be interesting to watch how effectively and when they use this variation against the Indian batsmen.

In any format the West Indian bowlers have always performed. This time the side require their batsmen to do well too.