Kraigg Brathwaite: West Indies 'didn't show the fight' with brittle batting
The home side failed to reach 200 in four innings against South Africa
Captain Kraigg Brathwaite denied that the lack of a batting coach was to blame for West Indies performances in the Test series against South Africa and apologised to supporters for the team's poor displays.
West Indies were bowled out for their lowest total against South Africa, 97, in the first Test and failed to cross 170 runs in any of the four innings in the series but Brathwaite said the batters must take responsibility for their failings.
"It isn't a factor [having no batting coach]. The coaches here are doing a very good job. And as batters, we know where we went wrong," Brathwaite said. "We didn't bat well. Full stop."
He admitted that fans deserved better from their team following the series win over Bangladesh and draw against Sri Lanka. "We're very sorry. We were disappointing. We've got to come back and show that fight. Sometimes it's not all about winning but you want to see the fight and we didn't show the fans the fight. We've got to come back better."
In Chattogram, West Indies successfully chased a target of 395 in the first Test and in Dhaka, they scored more than 400 in the first innings of the second Test while they saw off a Sri Lankan attack to draw the first Test in Antigua and totalled over 350 in the second Test and were able to declare to set Sri Lanka a target in the second. Against South Africa, the numbers were lower. West Indies' highest partnership in the first Test was 46 between Roston Chase and Jermaine Blackwood and 64 in the second between Kieran Powell and Kyle Mayers. "Part of the plan obviously was to bat better and have consistent partnerships and big partnerships but we didn't have any," Brathwaite said.
But Brathwaite managed to find a silver lining in the way his attack performed and credited them with providing West Indies best moments in an otherwise disappointing effort. "We were magnificent in the field. Kemar Roach was magnificent. Every time I asked the bowlers for a spell, they were always willing to do the job," he said. "And we took some very good catches. The bowling unit must be commended for the effort."
West Indies have almost two months before their next Test assignment against Pakistan in August. Brathwaite said they will use the time to work on the technical and mental aspects of the game in a bid to improve their performances in their next Test outing.
"During the series, you can't work on anything technical and Test cricket is all mental," he said. "But you always have something to work on as a player. We have a couple of weeks and we could work on a few flaws that we have."
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent