England in West Indies 2016-17 March 2, 2017

Law sets sights on West Indies' World Cup qualification

ESPNcricinfo staff

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'We must judge Law by results' - Ganga

The new West Indies coach Stuart Law has said his main aim is to make sure the team qualifies directly for the 2019 World Cup.

Currently ranked No. 9 by the ICC, West Indies have to improve their position by at least one spot before the September 30 deadline. The top eight ODI sides, including hosts England, on the cut-off date gain automatic entry into the showpiece event while the bottom four will have to go through the rigours of a qualifying competition, where ten contenders fight for only two spots.

West Indies' quest begins with the first of three ODIs at home against England on March 3. Then they take on their nearest competition on the rankings table - Pakistan at No. 8 - in April over three matches, which could prove decisive to which of the two teams end up in the top eight. West Indies also have the cushion of five more 50-over matches against England in the UK before September 30. While winning as much as possible would be the priority of any international cricket team, Law knows it is especially important for his.

"The main aim is to qualify for the next World Cup, the 50-over World Cup, so these one-day games are extremely important to us," he said. "So that's our main focus really at this stage. I know we have Pakistan coming for T20s, Tests and one-dayers as well but the one-day series probably will take paramount importance."

There is considerable disappointment in West Indies at missing out on the Champions Trophy. They had won the tournament in 2004 but now, for the first time ever, they will not be part of it. Several issues - prominent among them the spat between the WICB and their biggest match-winners - have meant the one-day team, unlike its counterpart in T20s, is rarely at full strength. These concerns, however, are being addressed with the help of Jimmy Adams, the former captain and the new director of cricket in West Indies.

"It's a great little tournament, the Champions Trophy, the mini World Cup and to not be there probably isn't where you want to be," Law said. "You want to be in every single one of those tournaments but it is what it is. We've just got to make sure we have our heads screwed on for the one-day tournaments we play in upcoming tours and if we can win those, we can get through to qualify for the World Cup. That's probably the bigger one to worry about."

Law is confident of the men under his charge - "We've got power. We've got extreme power. Match that with a bit of technique as well, we're looking pretty good." - and that helps because he is only into his second month on the job and there are other challenges to navigate as well.

"For me, it's about seeing how it all operates," Law said "Learning the different cultures from the different islands and how to address people and how to get the best out of the young kids is probably the most important thing for me now. I'm not going to focus on becoming No. 1 in the world at this stage. I'm focusing on building a culture, building a work ethic in the dressing room that will put the little brick in place so that they can become the best they can be."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Shekar on March 6, 2017, 11:48 GMT

    The only way to do that is to get rid of the selection blunders and blunderers! Pollard was dropped from the team for non-performance and the selectors wanted to focus on youth....so they picked Carlos who is the same age as Pollard and he has yet to do anything in ODIs. Time to move on...

  • Harsh on March 3, 2017, 12:19 GMT

    @BLACK_BIRD Number of football playing nations across the world is way too large as compared to cricket playing nations. If you bring the 100th rank football team to the world cup I am sure nobody would be interested in watching the game. Same is the case with cricket. If you bring in the 18th or 20th rank team, I am sure even cricket followers wouldn't want to watch.

  • MS on March 3, 2017, 5:54 GMT

    Icc's qualifying rules for the World cup itself is wrong. All test playing nations must automatically qualify and then the two remaining spots should be contended by other nations. Change the rules immediately.

  • Black on March 3, 2017, 4:00 GMT

    It's a shame too few teams can play world cup. fifa is doing better job than bcci. They managed to play 32 players in a world cup.

  • geoffs8103821 on March 2, 2017, 21:48 GMT

    World cricket needs a strong West Indian team and Pakistan team. Cricket is not a big enough sport globally to not help team's that for whatever reason are struggling. Only England Australia and India make good money in cricket they need to do more to help.

  • Michael on March 2, 2017, 21:43 GMT

    The WI will win 3-0. Don't see this English team giving the WI any trouble at all.

  • Desmond on March 2, 2017, 19:53 GMT

    3-0 to England if the weather holds. This is a mediocre team, thanks to mediocre administrators.

  • Aalee on March 2, 2017, 18:34 GMT

    West Indies Cricket is an outdated colonial anachronism, a geographic amalgam of 15 countries and territories. Little wonder there is constant bickering and management issues. It is well past its use by date. Time for change. Carribbean cricketing Countries should fly their own flag within ICC. The remaining WI dependencies and territories can rebrand and continue as a coalition until they too achieve independence.

  • Bhavik on March 2, 2017, 16:00 GMT

    The losses in ODI's and Test may seem decline in WI cricket, but recent super50 shows how talented players in WI. While many not agree on Dave Cameron's decisions, but one thing I like what he has done is to keep develop the game at regional level and getting more people on payroll. Players are able to make a living off playing domestic cricket than before. Some of the seniors like DJ Bravo, Pollard are all about money. The game is not bigger than any individuals. WI may be loosing now but they are in building stage and will be on top in 4-5 years.

  • Khalid on March 2, 2017, 15:42 GMT

    So few people attending PSL, don't like it. It is not failure!!!

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