x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

The Windies will improve in time

David Williams, the former West Indies wicketkeeper and now the assistant coach, believes the West Indies have the potential to improve.

David Williams, the assistant coach for the West Indies, believes that the team can reach a better level.
David Williams, the assistant coach for the West Indies, believes that the team can reach a better level.

ABU DHABI // David Williams, the former West Indies wicketkeeper and now the assistant coach, believes his team has the potential to reach a better level than the one they are in at the moment. Having seen his team suffer a 3-0 loss in the Fortune Cup ODI series against Pakistan, Williams is hopeful for a West Indies revival, but not as the team of the 70s and the 80s.

"There are several theories but somewhere the West Indies system has failed," said Williams, who stood behind to some of the greatest fast bowlers such as Joel Garner, Courtney Walsh, Malcolm Marshall and company. "There are a lot of things to be done to revive West Indies cricket, and I sincerely believe it will come, because I don't see any dearth of talent. This West Indies team will improve in time and one good series, like the one we are about to play in New Zealand, can set things right."

The boys from Caribbean concluded their first visit to the Zayed Stadium with a day-night friendly with an Abu Dhabi Select team, which West Indies won by 173 runs on Friday night. They leave today for a tour of New Zealand that consists of two Tests, two Twenty20's and five ODI's. Despite the series loss, Williams felt the team benefited from the Fortune Cup and the friendly game. "Every game is an experience and playing with a different opposition is even more useful for our team," added Williams. "It's all about playing more games and benefit from them. Friday's match was not the greatest but a good one to keep the guys going."

Kemar Roach took a hat-trick to bundle out the Abu Dhabi Select for 115 in 22.2 overs in reply to the West Indies total 288-7. Roach, 20, dismissed Rameez Shahzad leg before, had Amjad Ali caught by Chris Gayle at first slip and completed the hat-trick by trapping Nithin Gopalkrishnan, to return with 3-27 from six overs. The hosts were never in the chase after Daren Powell struck in his very first over. He removed Arshad Ali (0) and his opening ball partner Lionel Baker removed Irfan Haider (five) and Mohammed Iqbal (20) to reduce them to 27-3. Shahzad (38) and the captain Saqib Ali (22) shared a 50-run stand when Roach gatecrashed the party.

Brendan Nash and Ramnaresh Sarwan provided the platform for the West Indies after Zahid Shah had removed Sewnarine Chattergoon and Leon Johnson quickly. Shah took Chattergoon'a return catch and trapped Johnson the next ball as the tourists were left two wickets down for two runs after three deliveries of the game. Xavier Marshall and the Australian born Nash repaired the inning with an 84-run stand for the third wicket before Fayyaz Ahmed and Haider provided a double blow to put the West Indies in another spot of trouble at 89-4 in the 21st over.

Sarwan, batting down the order, took them out of trouble with an entertaining 87 off 77 balls, and added 140 for the fifth wicket with Nash, who hit just two boundaries in his knock of 87. Shivnarine Chanderpaul then set off the fireworks with seven boundaries in his 24-ball 44 not out for the tourists to post a decent total on the board. apassela@thenational.ae