West Indies v Bangladesh, 1st ODI, Dominica July 27, 2009

Reifer concerned by top-order batting

Cricinfo staff
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Floyd Reifer, the West Indies captain, has said while he is happy with the balance of the team, the top-order batting remains a concern following a 52-run defeat to Bangladesh in the first ODI in Dominica.

West Indies, who lost the Test series 2-0, were chasing 247 and lost their first four wickets for 42 runs in 12 overs before Devon Smith's 65 took them past 100. "We didn't get the start we wanted from the top, and this is something that is worrying us at the moment," Reifer said. "We are not getting enough partnerships at the top of the innings."

After the spinners had been successful in the Test series, it was expected the pitches for the ODIs would favour bounce and pace. The Windsor Park curator had said he would comply with West Indies coach John Dyson's request for faster tracks. However Bangladesh opened with left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak, who took 4 for 39 - including two of the first four wickets.

Razzak, who was suspended by the ICC for a suspect bowling action in November and cleared four months ago, said the pitches in the Caribbean favoured spin bowling and he was not surprised when his captain handed him the new ball.

"When I played in the Caribbean in the 2007 World Cup, I also used the new ball, so it's normal," Razzak said. "But this was important for me. I was out of the team for eight months, and now I am back in the side, I am looking to do well."

Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan, who scored a half-century, said the team had been confident of the total on the board since the pitch was playing slow and there were four spinners in the XI. "I have been surprised by the nature of the pitches in the Caribbean," Shakib said. "I thought they would have had more bounce and pace. But it suited our spinners, and Razzak came back into the side, bowled well, and did a good job for us."