Holder backs Shai Hope to come good with the bat

By July 15, 2020

On the eve of the second #Raisethebat Test match between the West Indies and England and Old Trafford on Thursday, West Indies Jason Holder is backing Shai Hope to eventually come good with the bat.

Hope has struggled in Test matches averaging 26.71 in 32 Tests. In the first Test at the Ageas Stadium in Southampton last week, Hope had scores of 16 and 9, raising concerns about whether he might eventually be dropped from the team. However, at the pre-match press conference on Wednesday, Holder when asked if Hope runs the risk of being dropped because of poor form, jumped to the defence of his number-three batsman.

“Going into a Test series you want to give a player as much confidence as you possibly can. I don’t look at whether you want to drop and select somebody else. You’ve got a core group of guys which you give added confidence and boost to in order for them to go and perform,” Holder said.

“The great thing about this site is that we have been together now for a while. The nucleus of this squad has been the same and all I want to do is keep encouraging our guys. Shai is a quality player; we’ve seen that particularly the last time he came here in England, and his one-day form has been really good, so I have all confidence Shai will deliver. He just needs to get himself in, get himself going and he is going to go big for us.”

In 2017, Hope scored centuries in both innings (147 and 118*) at Headingly as the West Indies defeated England by five wickets.

Holder said his side does not feel pressure going into Thursday’s match because his players are focussed on the task at hand.

“There is no pressure for us, we don’t get caught up in the off-the-field noise and everyone talking,” he said.

“We are just here to play cricket and each individual has a role within the team and it’s more or less us having to focus on our individual roles to bring together a strong collective effort.”


Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

Related items

  • CWI to send inspection team to Bangladesh ahead of January 2021 tour CWI to send inspection team to Bangladesh ahead of January 2021 tour

    Cricket West Indies (CWI) will, this week, send a two-member inspection team to Bangladesh to conduct a detailed assessment ahead of the scheduled ICC Future Tours Programme (FTP) tour in January next year.

  • 'That's what we want' - WI coach Simmons pleased with increasing battle to keep places 'That's what we want' - WI coach Simmons pleased with increasing battle to keep places

    Windies head coach Phil Simmons admits to being pleased by increasing pressure placed on batsmen to perform, with competition for spots in the line-up beginning to heat up.

    Recently the duo of Darren Bravo and Shimron Hetmeyer returned to the batting line-up, but there was no room for the out of form Shai Hope, once a staple of the batting order.  With Bravo looking to be in good form on his return to the line-up and some displays of consistency from the likes of Sharmarh Brooks and Roston Chase, Simmons hopes the tussle for places leads to steadier performances in the future.

    “It’s a case where everybody is under pressure.  We are getting more and more of a group of batsmen where everyone is competing for four or five places,” Simmons told members of the media via an online press conference from New Zealand.

    “With the likes of Hetmyer coming back in and Bravo coming back in, after missing the England tour, Shai Hope is not here.  You are getting a group that is fighting for three or four positions in this case,” he added. 

    “So, it is putting pressure on them to perform, that is what we want.  If you perform you will be there and the performance we are talking about is 100s, big 100s that is what we keep singing to the players.”


  • 'Bowlers always step up' - WI coach Simmons not bothered by unit's struggles in opening tour match 'Bowlers always step up' - WI coach Simmons not bothered by unit's struggles in opening tour match

    West Indies coach Phil Simmons insisted he was not overly concerned by the struggles of the bowling unit to take wickets in the first practice game last week.

    It was tough going on day one of the first tour match, for a Windies bowling unit that included top strike bowlers Kemar Roach, Shannon Gabriel, and Alzarri Joseph.  Of the trio, Joseph was the only one to take a wicket in the first innings as New Zealand A put on 308 for 3 before declaring.  Gabriel did claim a wicket in the second innings of the drawn match.

    The coach, however, believes the consistent threat of the bowling unit over the past several years speaks for itself and remained more concerned about the team's batting, which has been far less assured during the same time period.

    “Over the years we have seen that the bowling has been our strength,” Simmons told members of the media from New Zealand on Tuesday.

    “If in these two matches, the one that’s gone and the one tomorrow, the batsmen can get into form and get into the line that we want them to, I’m not worried about the bowlers.  The bowlers are always up to the task in the Test matches for a few years now,” he added.

    Led by a century from returning batsman Darren Bravo the West Indies did put in a solid performance with the bat after scoring 366 in their first innings.


© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.