West Indies in New Zealand 2013-14 December 25, 2013

Bravo urges team to forget Test debacle

Renaldo Matadeen

Dwayne Bravo, the West Indies ODI captain, has asked his team to set aside the disappointing results of the Tests against New Zealand, ahead of the ODI series which starts on December 26 in Auckland.

West Indies lost the Test series 2-0 and their ODI squad, weakened by the absence of Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard, suffered another setback when Marlon Samuels had to return home due to a wrist injury. Gayle was ruled out of the series after suffering a hamstring injury on the tour to India, while Pollard is still recovering from a knee injury. Bravo, however, felt that the lack of big names was an opportunity for the rest of the squad.

"The couple of training sessions we've had have been very good. It's a different type of energy," Bravo said. "We feel more comfortable in the shorter format and we want to start well. We know New Zealand at home is always a difficult challenge. They are a tough team to beat but I think we can do well and the confidence is showing after our sessions.

"We can't hide it. We have injuries. Three of our better players are out and we will miss them. They're world-class players and big shoes to fill. They're experienced but nonetheless this is a chance for other players to make a name for themselves and stamp their authority. Whichever team runs out on the pitch, we must give 100% and play with a high intensity."

Bravo stressed the ODI series was a chance for the team to show its resilience after West Indies lost their second successive away Test series by a 2-0 margin. He further emphasised that the team's success would depend on how far the new entrants to the squad could acclimatise to New Zealand's conditions.

"We will take this ODI series one game at a time and improve our attitude. It is a positive how well we played against India and barely lost that ODI series," Bravo said. "The key will be our batsmen getting fifties and converting them to big hundreds. Some of us were not in the Test team and will have to adjust to the pitches and that's part of our preparation."

Prior to the India tour, West Indies had won six Tests in a row, including two against New Zealand at home last year. Their run of form in ODIs this year has also been patchy, as the side has lost 13 of the 23 games they have played. They managed to beat India in ODIs at home and away, but haven't been consistent against the stronger teams. Bravo admitted that there would be changes to the squad following the Test losses, but urged his team to stay positive, saying limited-overs cricket was a strong point for the side.

"It's a young but talented team. We're inexperienced but once there's no Test hangover and we don't take New Zealand for granted," he said. "We'll play to the best of our ability and get the right results. We just need to be positive and look forward. Once we get the hang of the pitches, we have the tools for the job.

"We've gotten over the past. Many have said that it's a bit embarrassing to see the state of our cricket today but as players, we'll take full responsibility. Some changes may be forthcoming to the Test team and as much as I'd like to return to the Test fold, I can only focus on leading the guys into this battle and taking this series home. One-days and T20s have been our strong points and I think we'll show why very soon."

Renaldo Matadeen is a sportswriter and social media manager for ESPN Caribbean. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on December 27, 2013, 20:18 GMT

    WI , need to start from scratch.......

  • H on December 25, 2013, 22:19 GMT

    "We feel more comfortable in the shorter format and we want to start well." Dwayne Bravos words tells exactly why the WI are languishing at the bottom. Utter rubbish. So the WI team that was once a dominating force in Test cricket is now relegated to a team that sees themselves only being able to play 50 over and 20/20 cricket? His mindset says it all. Is this is the guy that some are calling for to return and possibly lead the test team? I have heard comments from this guy about playing entertaining cricket. Musicians are paid to entertain. Any sports fan want to see their team winning. The WI team need to practice, practice, practice. They need discipline, rigorous training and a level of pride and professionalism. It has been quite obvious that Bravo, Gayle, etc. has not or ever will adhere to what it takes to be successful. All they want to do is entertain, party and have fun.

  • Dummy4 on December 25, 2013, 19:14 GMT

    One-days and T20s have been our strong points Come on Dwayne, your in NZ and it will be hell of the task before producing performance its useless to blow your trumpet !

  • ESPN on December 25, 2013, 15:20 GMT

    Forget playing cricket WI

  • Dummy4 on December 25, 2013, 15:07 GMT

    The entire Management of W.I cricket needs to be reviewed. Like other sports when mgmt. fail to get results the Board need to get leaders that will lead for positive results. We have the talent in the W.I the cricket board needs to provide the proper leadership. The players also need to give 100% all the time and if they don't then they should be replaced. I really hope to see some positive changes in the very near future. W.I cricket fans deserves better.

  • Dummy4 on December 25, 2013, 12:24 GMT

    i agree with wirus dwayn bravo has a lot of work to do he like sarwan are not the players they used to be and for him to think he can regain his place in the test team is a real joke and going backwards i judge players up against the austalian system they would be lucky to be playing sheild cricket , what we need is top class batting and bowling coaches. good luck to the west indies we have to improve our batting bowling and fielding by at least 80%

  • ilyas on December 25, 2013, 12:18 GMT

    Wirus you are totally correct. There needs to be a huge uplift in energy as it has been sadly lacking in the last 5 tests. This positivity will also raise the fielding levels which is crucial to being competitive. The only thing I have my doubts about are bravo - he is good at getting flashy 20s and his bowling is currently worse than sammys. My view would be for bravo to concentrate on his batting and captaincy and forget bowling. Bravo has the batting technique to be a top class batsman and bat at 6 for the Windies and if he improves his captaincy then become captain of the test side but he must relearn how to bat for long periods. I remember him opening for the test side in Australia when WI had injuries and he scored a really classy 80. That is how he needs to bat. Additionally bravo needs to reduce the amount of 20/20 he plays around the world as that impacts on how he plays in the longer form of cricket and will also help prolong his career.

  • Orlando on December 25, 2013, 10:29 GMT

    Winning or losing this ODI series is not what matters. A positive result would be 1. Dwayne Bravo leading from the front with runs and wickets / tight bowling and showing real leadership, thereby lifting the team. 2. Incisive, pressure bowling 3. One or two players getting hundreds 4. Charles to become a capable batsman / wicketkeeper 5. Batting partnerships 6. Sharp, aggressive fielding 7. Real team spirit - lifting each other up.

    If we can see these things throughout the series, whether they manage to win or not it will be a step forward. Dwayne Bravo has to rediscover his form and zing and infect the rest of the team like he used to. If he can succeed personally, the team will succeed. He may also find himself not just back in the test team but as captain. It's all about changing the MINDSET. Bravo may be able to do it.

  • stewey on December 25, 2013, 9:32 GMT

    Good luck WI, but you have a lot of work to do.

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