ICC Women's World Cup 2008-09 January 21, 2009

West Indies women aim to improve batting

Cricinfo staff

Batting will be the key focus during the West Indies women's ten-day World Cup preparation camp which starts on Wednesday. Sherwin Campbell, the coach, was not pleased with the team's batting display on their most recent tour, to Sri Lanka in November, and is seeking improvement on that front ahead of the World Cup in March.

"Basically we are going to be concentrating on the batting," Campbell told CMC Sport. "Batting will be one of the key areas during the training sessions. We were inconsistent in Sri Lanka with a lot of the players getting starts but not carrying on to big scores."

West Indies lost the five-ODI series 3-2 in Sri Lanka, with 170 being their best total. The team will be working at the Banks and Queen's Park grounds just outside Bridgetown, Barbados, after which the 20-member squad will be pruned to 15 for the tournament in Australia. The selectors will also name a captain and vice-captain.

West Indies will face defending champions Australia, New Zealand and South Africa in the first round, with the top three making it to the Super Six Stage. They came fifth at the 2005 World Cup in South Africa, winning two of their seven games.

The training squad includes six players from the 2005 squad, Debbie-Ann Lewis, Pamela Lavine, Cordel Jack, Kirbyina Alexander, Anisa Mohammed and Juliana Nero. Lavine, Jack and Lewis return after missing the tour of Sri Lanka. "It is very important that we have experience ahead of this big tournament," Campbell said. "The squad is a young squad and experience coming in will be very good as we prepare for Australia."

West Indies will be without 40-year-old Nadine George, who captained the team in Sri Lanka but is now retired.