Windies must winHITTING OUT: West Indies captain Darren Sammy attacking during his brief innings against Australia on Saturday. ((AP Picture))
By Barry Wilkinson in Sri Lanka | Mon, September 24, 2012 - 12:07 AM
COLOMBO – West Indies captain Darren Sammy has blamed his team for taking “too long to respond” to Australia’s batting assault on Saturday night and assures fans the players will be more proactive when they take on Ireland today in their last preliminary of the ICC World Twenty20.
For both teams it’s a must-win, and whoever is triumphant tonight at the Premadassa Stadium will face England on Thursday in Kandy in the first match of the Super Eights.
Reflecting on what went wrong for West Indies when Australia, chasing 191, finished on 100 for one in 9.1 overs to win by 17 runs under the Duckworth/Lewis system, Sammy said his bowlers did not get the ball consistently in the right areas. He also frowned on the role the elements played in the West Indies’ loss.
“I think rain played its part, otherwise it would have been a cracker of a game,” he said. “The build-up was very exciting and I think both teams did deliver, but it was unfortunate that rain came when it did.
“We took too long to make things happen and, on reflection, we could’ve done some things a bit different. But we know what we have to do [today].”
Visibly upset, Sammy said that while people would have favoured Australia to win, it would have been tough for the Aussies to maintain their high strike rate.
“We thought we were still in it. They still needed nine an over and they had to keep going. It’s unfortunate that weather played a part, but that’s something we have to get over. We are now looking forward to the next game against Ireland,” Sammy commented.
“We back ourselves to set targets and I think we did that. We back ourselves to set targets and defend them. It’s good we achieved our first target with the bat, put lots of runs on the board.
“We came here to win the World Cup and that is still the plan. We lost here in the rain but that will not put a damper on our plans. We need to win against Ireland and make sure we qualify for the Super Eights and take it from there.”
The West Indies went through their final paces at the Colts Cricket Club (P. Sara Oval) yesterday and looked in good spirits.
A possible team change to tonight’s match could be leg-spinner Samuel Badree coming in at pacer Ravi Rampaul’s expense.
The match bowls off at 7:30 p.m. (10 a.m. Barbados time).
While most of the teams came up against relative lightweights in their opening game, the West Indies played Australia in their first match.
Sammy said that did not really make any difference to his team’s outlook.
“Whether you play Australia or Ireland first, these are the two matches in the first round. That’s the way these matches are scheduled,” said Sammy.
“I would have preferred we could win today [Saturday] and even win on Monday [today] . . . just win to qualify for the Super Eights stage. Hopefully, the weather stays good and we will get a full game.”
“We have confidence in this team,” added Sammy. “We as a unit respect all our opponents . . . . We are not going to take Ireland for granted. We have seen how they have played over the last three years.”
In the event there is a no-result in tonight’s match, West Indies will advance to the Super Eights ahead of Ireland on account of a superior net run rate.Please read the full story in today’s DAILY NATION, or in the eNATION edition.
- Editor's Choice