“50-overs craziness! Unfortunately, West Indies’ bark much louder than its bite!”


Firstly, the days that my prodigies arrived on earth were the happiest, most interesting days that I have ever had.  I was not sure if to shout, cry or laugh.  I certainly celebrated!

So, even if you are single mothers, doing masterful almost impossible jobs as both father and mother, or if you are really fathers, if only by biology, or idealistically, real male heroes of your off-springs:

“Happy Father’s Day!”

Now, people called what happened at Cardiff ‘cricket drama’.  I think it was plain cricketing stupidity!

West Indies cricketers, mostly fathers themselves, must be ruing their lack of timing, lack of game sense even, in that game v South Africa.  They easily had the game in their hands, and then just threw it away!

Knowing that rain was always going to be a factor, all bits of information and appreciation were necessary.

How could West Indies not know par scores, each over, as suggested by Duckworth-Lewis computations?

It was not difficult to have that information.  Indeed, the par score was actually high-lighted on the score-board, so please do not tell me about “drama.”  This was just plain crap cricket by West Indies!

When Kieron Pollard was out, trying to bludgeon another boundary, when just a single would have sufficed, and keep his wicket, to put West Indies into semi-finals with one wicket less, and better Net Run Rate than South Africa, one had to remember events at Guyana National Stadium, in 2009, v England.

Then West Indies Coach John Dyson, thinking that West Indies were ahead, actually called his batting players in, allowing them to leave the field, thinking that WI had won.  They were actually two runs behind!

Dyson suggested that he had read down the wrong column.  Ironically, at the time, only Shiv Chanderpaul queried that decision.

I remember suggesting that Dyson should have been fired on the spot!  If he was an aviator, he would have killed people every week!  One must always know one’s tools used for work!

But pressure was always on West Indies last Friday.  They goaded, even boasted, that they would win!

West Indies should not have had to scramble to get just 231 from 31 overs; 7.5 runs per six-ball over.

Was South Africa’s bowling, Dale Stein et al, that good?  I say a resounding “No!”

When at the crease, West Indies seems to faze into an aura of melancholy, that open space between heaven and hell known as “purgatory”, where self-assuredness seems to fail them when really needed.

I had previously warned that 50 overs are not T-20’s.  When West Indies played India, that aspect was obvious, West Indies struggling to make that adjustment.

None of West Indies’ wickets v India were the results of great bowling.  India’s spinners simply strangled West Indies’ much vaunted and celebrated batting line-up, with great patience.

Over 50 overs, the bark of West Indies seems much louder than its bite, especially against spin bowling!

Our big T-20 hitters have been unable to come to terms with patience, manipulation and determination to go past an energetic 40 or 50 of hitting out, and to try to stay the full course of the 50-over innings.

The statistics told a strange tale when West Indies batted v India, making just 233 in 50 overs, an innings that put Windies net run-rate low, forcing that all-or-nothing game v South Africa, to qualify for semis.

With its on-paper batting might, Windies should never have been in this quandary of NRR!

But the signs were already there, when West Indies played that first game against Pakistan.

After dismissing Pakistan for a paltry 170, thanks to three wickets each from Kemar Roach and Sunil Narine, West Indies should have walked the required 171, at just 3.42 runs per over.

Pakistan knew that they had to dismiss West Indies to win, since it would have been very difficult to be on the defensive for only 170 runs.  At 6-137, then 7-143, West Indies were in deep mire.

Chris Gayle’s 39 was the innings’ highest score, with only two other scores of 30.  Had it not been for wicket-keeper Denesh Ramdin and tail-enders Roach and Narine, West Indies would have been garroted.

West Indies’ throttle was fully retarded when they played India.  None of the batsmen seemed adventurous enough, being as tied down and thrust up as ever.

It was if West Indies actually feared India!

But what exactly is to be feared from India, except its batting?  Certainly its bowling holds no terrors!

Gayle, Darren and Dwayne Bravo, Pollard, Darren Sammy, Marlon Samuels and Johnson Charles, is as good a one-day batting line-up as West Indies could probably presently muster.

Yet, the highest score in the three preliminary games in Champions Trophy was Charles’ 60 against India.

Sammy’s 56 no v India was West Indies’ only other half century of the entire tournament.

That is quite poor!  Shameful!

West Indies talked much but did not deliver.  I expected them to go to semi-finals, maybe even win.

Now, the excuses, bilge and rhetoric will entail.  Meanwhile, India and Sri Lanka arrive soon.


E-mail:  c.e.h.croft@gmail.com

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  1. cleanbowled
    June 17, 2013

    The Windies effort against South Africa brings to mind images of a fella who wines and dines a beatiful chick but is left to rue his misfortune as he watches another guy take her home. At least they can now enjoy the rest of the Champions Trophy in the comfort of their living rooms like the rest of us.

  2. Julie
    June 17, 2013

    So true we need Sammy back..As for Gayle , Pollard Bravo their only interest is IPL . No regard for Fans and Country..Thats my take on the whole issue

  3. June 17, 2013

    players have no brains in their head. Even if they do, they do not use it. How can you get run out with both players at the same end when the ball is hit to the boundary ropes, no one trying to run to the other end. Look at Samuels batting. First ball of the over, you hit Styne the best fast bowler in the world for 4, you trying to slog at the next ball, dont you think that a bowler of his class is going to come back hard at you. All he had to do is play a defensive shot and nudge some singles against their best bowler, as for Gayle the guy is always getting outhe point or slips area it iis so predictable. Where is this vaunted batting lineup I dont see it look to India for batting can WI compare to the India lineup, hell no. What was Sarwan doing in the side. Darren Bravo is a good Test match player, he is yet to master limited overs cricketest Indies are still a bunch of underachievers

  4. %
    June 16, 2013

    Very disappointing indeed. It showed a lack of cricketing knowledge. When will Gayle and the likes of Pollard and Bravo deliver for WI when the team really needs their help.
    Think Sammy should be given back the captaincy. He is the best we have presently, at all levels.

  5. Enuff
    June 16, 2013

    Let me summarize all what you just said Bro, West Indies cricket- a case of bad luck????

  6. Gully
    June 16, 2013

    Windies Cricketers at times or maybe most instances Don’t think the game out period..

    They need to understand that fours and six hitting doesn’t always crunch things…

    SA kept their nerves, windies didn’t..

    Also in sports it’s good to get under the sleeve of your team whom you competing against…

    But Capt Bravo tweeting before the match that SA chokes in matches like that certainly came back to hunt him…

    It’s wise to stay focus and do the talking on the Field of play…..

    Sammy is certainly a better choice for this present windies team as capt he is a motivator at the helm.

    The Windies cricket overall has not peaked to the levels of major success stories in today’s cricket, so rocking the boat after some sunlight has peaked through the darkness, was indeed a lack of vision which clouds the structure of windies cricket as the (NORM)

    • "O" STRESS"
      June 16, 2013

      No emotions there! but the management team needs to be fired. Sick and tired of the same old, same old “BS” “OMG” SMFH” Insularity has killed our cricket, Now it is bury it”. Every one has drank from the same cup. And the fans are left as the laughing bunch, unless we demand better from all involved we will always be searching for excuses.

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