Windies coach Stuart Law had high praises for his charges despite admitting the team played a bit of ‘kamikaze cricket’ in a four-wicket win over Zimbabwe in the ICC World Cup qualifiers on Monday.
A solid partnership from Marlon Samuels (86) and Shai Hope (76) seemed to have set the regional team up for a fairly routine run chase, but a flurry of late wickets gave the African team just a glimmer of hope at the back end of the innings.
Following Samuels’ dismissal with just 45 runs needed, Hope followed soon after when he was caught brilliantly by Sikandar Razza. Holder (6) and Shimron Hetmyer (13) played impatient strokes to follow soon after but the seventh-wicket partnership of Rovman Powell and Ashley Nurse eventually saw West Indies to victory.
“Marlon Samuels and Shai Hope played a brilliant partnership. It would have been nice if one of them had been there at the end to cap off a great day. We lost a few wickets towards the back end, which was a bit of kamikaze cricket at times. If it comes off it looks great. We were lucky to have two cool heads at the end there, Rovman Powell and Ashley Nurse, to see us over the line,” Law said of the innings.
Despite the slip-up, at the back end of the innings, Windies skipper Holder had been excellent against Zimbabwe. Holder made full use of the pace and bounce on offer to make early inroads which reduced Zimbabwe to 28/2. He then came back to castle Solomon Mire for 45 before getting rid of in-form batsman Sikandar Raza towards the end.
“Jason Holder, for the whole game, was outstanding. To only go for 35 runs in his 10, with a total of 290, is outstanding. And also picking up four wickets. At one stage, with Brendan Taylor there, Zimbabwe looked like getting 320, 330, 340. Our fielding was very good as well. The energy we showed was outstanding.” (SportsMax)