Fri, Mar 25, 2011 - Page 20 News List

Windies coach blasts seniors for exit

‘THE HUNGRIEST GUY’:The former champions have lost 19 consecutive matches against leading nations. Heads might roll before the beleaguered team faces Pakistan again


Vancouver Canucks right wing Victor Oreskovich, right, reaches for the puck in front of Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jonathan Ericsson during the first period of their NHL game on Wednesday in Detroit, Michigan.

Photo: Reuters

West Indies coach Ottis Gibson lashed out at his senior players for their inconsistency and warned them their international futures were in danger after the former champions crashed out of the World Cup.

Gibson pulled no punches after the West Indies were shot out for 112 during Pakistan’s 10-wicket romp in Wednesday’s quarter-final, saying the seniors needed to buck up or face the axe.

“We are very, very disappointed with our performance,” the coach said. “It’s a fact that our senior players have not performed. When the going got tough we did not stand up to it.”

“It comes down to individuals taking responsibility and having belief in themselves. Ultimately it comes down to performance, that’s what matters in sport,” he said. “Our batsmen, our best batsmen, have not performed consistently well enough for us to move forward.”

Star opener Chris Gayle managed just 170 runs in the tournament, Shivnarine Chanderpaul made 114, Ramnaresh Sarwan just 115 and big-hitter Kieron Pollard scored 180.

Gibson urged the seniors to learn from world batting record holder Sachin Tendulkar, who turns 38 next month, but retains the same hunger to score runs as he did in the past.

“A lot of people need to look at somebody like Tendulkar who is a sort of senior statesman in the Indian team, but he seems to be the hungriest guy of the lot,” Gibson said. “Therefore he gets runs almost every time he goes out to bat. India still rely on him. We need to rely on our senior players the way India rely on him.”

Gibson warned hard decisions might be taken ahead of a home Test and one-day series against Pakistan starting next month.

“We have some time to reflect between now and then. There will be some serious decisions to be made about players and about the way forward in that time,” he said. “We still need some senior players in there. Guys who still have the hunger and desire to do well at the highest level.”

Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi claimed four wickets and fellow spinners Mohammad Hafeez and Saeed Ajmal chipped in with two each to bundle out the West Indies cheaply.

Chanderpaul was the only batsman to defy the spinners with a grim unbeaten 44 off 106 balls.

The West Indies were reduced to 71-8 before a 40-run stand between Kemar Roach and Chanderpaul helped them surpass their lowest World Cup total of 93 against Kenya in Pune in 1996.

The collapse reflected the lack of confidence among the West Indies batsmen after two inexplicable defeats against England and India from dominant positions.

They were on the brink of victory against England when, chasing a modest target of 244, they were comfortably placed at 222-6 before losing their last four wickets for three runs.

Against India, they caved in again as eight wickets fell for 34 runs after they were 154-2 and lost by 80 runs.

The West Indies have now lost 19 successive matches against the leading nations, but Gibson would not attribute the latest defeat to the slow wicket at the Sher-e-Bangla stadium.

“The wicket did not get anybody out,” the former fast bowler said. “It was not a bad wicket at all. It was a combination of poor batsmanship and perhaps very low confidence.

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