West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite believes his new opening partner Tagenarine Chanderpaul is well on the way to becoming a world class player, following an impressive debut last month.

The 26-year-old Chanderpaul, the son of legendary West Indies player Shivnarine Chanderpaul, earned plenty of plaudits after beginning his senior career against top Test team Australia last month. 

On debut against the Aussies, Chanderpaul scored 160 runs, which was the second most behind the in-form Brathwaite, and had a top score of 51.  In addition to his scoring, however, the player's relative comfort against top-class bowling on a good pitch was also of note.

“I think he’s world class, when you even look at a thing like the ‘leave alone’ that he has,” Brathwaite told member of the media, ahead of the team's tour of Southern Africa.

“...I think he will be a world class Test batsman, obviously he has the patience and you can see he has still the shots also. On some good Australian pitches his strike rate was higher than normal, so I really think he has a bright future,” he added.

“He is a very focussed player and very determined, so for sure he will make many West Indian’s proud.”

Brathwaite and Chanderpaul will look to lead from the front, as the team looks to bounce back from a poor showing in Australia last month.

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite expects major improvements from the team’s batsmen ahead of upcoming series against Zimbabwe and South Africa.

With the exception of productive cameos from Brathwaite and his opening partner Tagenarine Chanderpaul, the team’s last series against Australia proved to be a chastening experience, especially at the crease.

Over the course of two matches and four innings only Brathwaite, Chanderpaul and Roston Chase managed a half century.  In addition, the Australians won the first Test by a massive 419 runs, where the Windies were embarrassingly bowled out for 77 in the second innings.

“We didn’t get the big scores, we didn’t get the big first innings scores that I would have liked.  Going into Zimbabwe, especially at home, we know it won’t be a rollover,” Brathwaite told members of the media on Thursday.

“I really look forward to the batters spending time to get runs on the board.  I think that will be crucial for us setting up the game to win it,” he added.

“We have to show our worth, I think the batters need to come and show more fight because Zimbabwe will not be easy at home.  It’s not like we are going to show up and just get runs against Zimbabwe.”

Despite expecting a difficult task, the team can head into the encounter with some confidence having never lost to Zimbabwe in 10 encounters to date. 

West Indies batting legend Gordon Greenidge has revealed that he no longer feels the pain of watching the regional team struggle.  His secret, turn off the television.

As one half one of a devastating batting duo, the other being Desmond Haynes, for a Windies team that rarely found itself on the losing end, it is completely understandable how the Caribbean team’s recent failures would be a cause of discomfort.  

The Windies' struggles now date back decades but recently things have seemed particularly grim. At the last two World Cups, the team failed to progress from the preliminary rounds, while in the Test arena, a recent demolition at the hands of Australia will hardly have inspired feelings of all-conquering nostalgia.

“It used to hurt me but it doesn’t hurt me anymore because I don’t watch cricket anymore. Only if it is Test cricket and only if it is about a young player, who I have heard about, I will try my best to go and watch that kid play and make my own judgment about what I feel about that player," Greenidge told SportStar.

The former batsman’s recent grievances, however, run deeper than just the poor performance of the West Indies team.  Greenidge has also expressed concern for the longest format of the sport, where he scored 7558 runs, and its continued relevance and longevity in the face of the blossoming of several T20 leagues around the globe 

“On a personal note, I would not like to see 50-over withdrawn and just T20 being played. I believe T20 is a spectator’s sport, and it is no anymore a cricketer’s sport. Yes, cricketers play, but T20, for me, is like fast food. Test cricket is real cricket. From Test cricket, we came to 50-over, then T20, and now we are going to 10-over, where will we go from here maybe one-over or two-over per side? Keep the cricket alive but don’t banish Test cricket, that is the real cricket we all are here for, we all grew up with.”

 

Interim West Indies coach Andre Coley insists he is eager to embrace the challenge of coaching the regional cricket team, despite the numerous challenges associated with it.

Former all-rounder Phil Simmons became the latest casualty in a long line of coaches tasked with pushing the Caribbean team back among global cricket’s elites and failing to achieve that elusive target.

Coley, who has had stints with the region’s High-Performance Centre, women’s team and also served as an assistant coach for the men’s team, was appointed to fill the role, while Cricket West Indies (CWI) contemplates its next moves.

CWI announced that Coley would oversee the two-Test tour of Zimbabwe from the 28th January to 16th February, as well as the multi-format tour of South Africa, which includes two Tests, three One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and three T20 Internationals (T20Is) from the 21rd February to 28th March.

Despite finding himself placed under the microscope, in light of some of the team’s recent poor performances, he remains motivated and enthused to take up the role.

“Every coaching opportunity bring a different challenge and I have never been one to back away from a challenge,” Coley told the SportsMax Zone.

“If offered generally I look to take them on.  It’s just about assessing working with staff working with the players and coming up with the right strategy,” he added.

The 48-year-old has had a few stints with the senior, first joining the coaching ranks under Otis Gibson and serving spells under Stuart Law and briefly Simmons.  In his estimation, communication will be a crucial part of his plans for success.

“In this case communication is going to be very crucial, so working out what that communication strategy is going to be.”

Former West Indies batting coach, Toby Radford, is confident world-class former batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul would make a ‘solid’ pick for the role of Windies head coach.

The addition of the name of the former legendary batsman to the speculative list of potential replacement for Phil Simmons has garnered mixed reactions.  In opposition, some have pointed to Chanderpaul’s relative lack of experience, while others believe he would be more suited to a role in administration.

For Radford, who is well acquainted with the former player, there is no doubting the quality he would be able to bring to the role.  

“I’m a big fan, I’ve often talked about Shiv and what he brought to the game as a player.  He was a very hard worker and meticulous in preparation, a lot of the things I think he would instil as coach for the younger players,” Radford told the Mason and Guest show.

“He has been there and done it.  He was number one in the world for a period of time, a top Test player in the world.  He has played all round the world.  I think he would bring a huge amount to it,” he added.

“He is new to coaching and still finding his feet but he is having relative success and I think he would bring a lot to it,” he added.

Radford, however, believes the former batsman would have to be supported by a very capable team, which is always the case for head coaches as opposed to specialist coaches.  Chanderpaul, who retired from the sport six years ago, has already experienced some success as a coach, having led the Jamaica Tallawahs to the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) title last year.

 

 


Former West Indies fast bowler Daren Powell believes serious consideration should be given to attempting to retrieve the team's former coach Richard Pybus for the recently vacated position of head coach.

Pybus was sacked in controversial circumstances four years ago as part of a raft of changes made by the then-incoming Cricket West Indies administration of president Ricky Skerritt and his vice president Kishore Shallow.

The move had proven to be particularly unpopular at the time, given the fact that West Indies, under his leadership had only just put together an impressive performance in a Test series win against England and showed plenty of good qualities in a battling 2-2 tie in the ODI series between the teams.
In addition to that, several stakeholders and even some players advised the administration against making so many changes with the 2019 World Cup less than two months away.

 With the post once again vacant following the resignation of Phil Simmons, Powell believes the opportunity could exist to correct what many consider to have been a grave error in judgment.
As to whether the 54-year-old Pybus, who is reportedly shortlisted for the South Africa job, would be interested in returning after a departure in such acrimonious circumstances, or whether the CWI be willing to make such a drastic reversal is another thing entirely.
"Why can't we go back for him (Pybus) he was doing a good job and we have tried another way and it seems as if things didn't go down the right road," Powell told the Mason and Guest radio program.
As a part of their election platform, the Skerritt, Shallow administration had promised to give priority to Caribbean-born individuals for top leadership positions.
"If you look at Pybus and what he did with the West Indies, I would have been willing to cut off my nose to spite my face for him...how do you know why a man becomes a man when he can accept that he was wrong, apologize and move on," Powell added.
Prior to his appointment as coach of the team, Pybus endured somewhat of a rocky tenure, serving as High Performance director in February 2018, having previously served as West Indies director of cricket from 2013 to the end of 2016.

 

 

Renowned former West Indies wicketkeeper, Deryck Murray, has commended the team’s coach Phil Simmons for stepping down from the post but insists he is far from the only one who should be doing so.

The regional team has endured a particularly wretched run of form across all formats in recent months.  A poor showing at the T20 World Cup saw the two-time champions embarrassingly eliminated in the first round of the competition after loses to Scotland and Ireland.

In the aftermath, Simmons, and, then later team captain Nicholas Pooran, resigned their positions.  The Test team then traveled to Australia to face the home team in a two-match series where they were badly outplayed.  In the second Test, for instance, the team lost by a massive 419 runs after being bowled out for 77.

In light of such performances, Murray believes there needs to be many more changes at the broader management level than just Simmons, if the team is to truly start moving forward. 

 “I want to commend Phil Simmons he has done the honourable thing. 
He was responsible for the team when we did not qualify for the T20 World cup and he did the hourrable thing,” Murray told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“We should not assume for one minute, however, that one man, Philip Simmons, is responsible for the decline, for the losses of West Indies cricket," he added.

“I keep looking to see others follow suite but nothing like that has happened…”

Murray went on to state that he believed the entire government system surrounding the sport in the region needed to change.

Former Barbados wicketkeeper-batsman turned analyst Jamal Smith believes struggling West Indies batter Nkurmah Bonner could benefit from some decisiveness at the crease.

The 35-year-old Bonner has earned plenty of accolades for gritty performances for the West Indies since making his debut against Bangladesh in 2021.  The player has, however, struggled vor vorm ov late, managing just 65 in his last 5 innings and has been hit twice off short pithed bowling in the last year.

Bonner has been ruled out of the current Test series against Australia after being struck on the back of the helmet by a Cameron Green bouncer.  Despite being allowed to continue batting for another few hours Bonner is now under the team’s concussion protocol.

In light of the latest incident, questions have been raised regarding the player susceptibility to pace bowling.

“Short bowling is simple yet complex, you are either looking to attack the ball or defend it. I think.  In simple parlance either you are hooking or you ducking.  I think either Bonner is caught between two minds,” Smith told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“…He takes his eyes off the ball.  We’ve seen him now being struck.  If we’re being honest, we can pinpoint some of the technical deficiencies our batters have,” he added.

“We can’t knock Bonner because he’s done reasonably well up until this point, but you know he’s languid, he always looks little bit slow on the ball and these hard bouncy surfaces will show that up.”

Bonner has recorded two 100s and three 50s for the West Indies in 15 matches so far.

The West Indies Women have been docked 40 percent of their match fee for a slow over rate against England in the first ODI in Antigua on Sunday.

England triumphed in the match by a massive 142 runs after amassing 307 in addition to the loss, however, the ICC match referees imposed the sanction after the West Indies were found to be two overs short of the target after time after allowances were taken into consideration.

West Indies Women’s team captain Hayley Matthews pleaded no contest to the charges and as such there will be no need for a formal hearing.

Based on Article 2.22 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to minimum over-rate offences, players are fined 20 per cent of their match fee for every over their side fails to bowl in the allotted time.

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite insists he was not surprised by the determined, obdurate display of opening partner Tagenarine Chanderpaul, on his debut against Australia, on Wednesday.

Facing a mammoth 598 for 4 declared, the West Indies ended day 2 at 74 without loss after facing 25 overs.  Chanderpaul, the 25-year-old son of legendary West Indian batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul, made a solid 47 from 73 balls while Brathwaite himself made a more patient 18 from 79.

Chanderpaul was called into the squad last month as a replacement for previous opening batsman John Campbell, who is currently serving a doping violation suspension.  A match-up against top-ranked Australia certainly isn’t the easiest debut for the young batsman, his captain Brathwaite was, however, not worried.

“I wasn’t surprised.  I’ve known him for a while.  I’ve played against him and he has always had fight always takes his time to bat and bats for long periods,” Brathwaite said at the end of the days play.

“I know he is a fighter, so it isn’t surprising.  I just look forward to a lot from him playing for West Indies.  It was good to see but we need to continue,” he added.

Chanderpaul previously stood out for the team last week against the Prime Ministers XI where he recorded a century in the four-day affair.

West Indies Test captain Kraigg Brathwaite believes maintaining discipline will be crucial for the unit if they are to pose any type of challenge to Australia in the upcoming series.

Despite a relatively solid year in the red ball format, the Windies will start as massive underdogs against the top-ranked Australians on Sunday.  In addition to the fact that West Indies has not secured a win against Australia at home since 1993 the team has won just games in the last 8 Test series.

Having managed solid wins against England and Bangladesh in their last two series, however, Brathwaite will be hoping to spring a surprise.  For that, keeping focus will be crucial.

“We have 10 days of hard Test cricket to play.  We know Australia are a very, very good team, especially at home.  So, the main thing for us is to focus on our discipline,” Brathwaite of the media on Tuesday.

“When we are batting, we want to bat 100 overs plus, when we are bowling, we are looking to get 20 wickets.  So that obviously is to help the team win a game.  We know Australia is a superior team.  We have to play 10 days of hard cricket that’s the focus.”

The West Indies will play Australia in two Test matches.  The first will bowl off in Perth on December 4th, followed by a trip to Adelaide from December 7th-12th.

West Indies head coach Phil Simmons admits to some disappointment with a draw in the final four-day tour game against Prime Minister’s XI at Manuka Oval but believes it has been adequate preparation ahead of the two-Test series against Australia, which begins next week.

Chasing a total of 309 runs for victory, on the final day, a win seemed possible when the team entered the final break at 221 for 5, needing another 88 runs to claim victory.

 The West Indies had a less-than-ideal start to the final session, however, and found themselves reduced to 273 for 8, following the dismissals of Roston Chase, Alzarri Joseph, and then Kemar Roach, in fairly quick succession.

 Raymon Reifer and Joshua Da Silva then combined to help West Indies fight for the draw, playing out the final eight overs to finish on 277 for 8.

“I’m not happy with the results, we should have won it,” Simmons said following the final ball.

“We have a few misplaced wickets in the middle, while we were controlling the game, so that was a disappointment, but at the end of the day the way how the guys fought is always greatly encouraging,” he added.

With the players getting plenty of opportunities to bat and bowl in pressure situations, Simmons was though satisfied with what the tour match provided, ahead of a difficult series.

“The two games have been very good for us, mind you, flattish wickets, but the bowlers got the overs in their legs and the batsmen got their time at the crease so that was good for us.”

With just a week left to go vor the Australia vs West Indies Test series concerns have been raised regarding excessively poor tickets sales ahead of the match.

The world number one-ranked Australia will host the Windies in two-matches.  The first of the games will be held at Optus Stadium in Perth, beginning on Wednesday 30th.

The public’s interest in the series, however, remains lacklustre to date.  According to reports, just hundreds of tickets have been sold to members of the public, so var, well below the stadium’s capacity of the 60,000.  There now are concerns the series could set a record low vor Test mathes between the teams.

Australia batsman Australian batsman Marnus Labuschagne does not believe the low turnout is an overall lack of interest but believes there may be some fatigue in the fanbase.

 The country is fresh off a huge T20 World Cup on home soil and went straight into a three-game ODI series against England.

 

 

West Indies call-up Tagenarine Chanderpaul insists he is focused on being himself ahead of a possible debut for the Caribbean team in the upcoming series against Australia next week.

On Thursday, the 26-year-old Chanderpaul made 119 off 293 balls during the team’s warm-up game against a Prime Minister’s XI, in the ongoing four-day tour match in Canberra.  The knock featured a risp 11 fours and a six on his way to reaching triple figures.

Chanderpaul, who was called up to the team last month, is widely expected to partner Windies captain Kraigg Brathwaite at the top of the innings for the match-up with the world number-one ranked Aussies, following the suspension of John Campbell.

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Ahead of the player’s potential debut, comparisons to his famous father, West Indies legend Shivnarine Chanderpaul, are inescapable.  In an outstanding 164 Test match career for the West Indies, Chanderpaul scored 11867 runs, which puts him second all-time behind the great Brian Lara.  It’s a towering legacy to live up to.

“They’re big boots but I try and be myself.  I can only be myself, so I just try and be me,” the young Chanderpaul said after Thursday's match.

Like his father, Tagenarine has shown the propensity to be watchful and patient at the crease, which could bode well for the regional team.  The batsman, however, is hoping to eventually be recognized for his own style.

"I try and be myself. I can't replicate him, so I can only be myself. Fingers crossed… I'll try to get some runs if I'm selected."

 

West Indies wicketkeeping great Jeffrey Dujon believes the decision taken by captain Nicholas Pooran to step down is the best one for the player at this point in time.

The 27-year-old, who took charge of the region’s white-ball teams earlier this year, made the surprise decision to step down as captain, after just 7 months on the job.

As captain of the team, Pooran had faced severe pressure following the team’s poor showing at the T20 World Cup.  The West Indies failed to advance from the first round of the competition, following losses to Scotland and Ireland.  The results led to the resignation of the team’s head coach Phil Simmons but having only just been appointed to the post, Pooran was widely expected to keep the position.

Dujon admitted to being surprised but believes the player has done the right thing given the circumstances.

“I think it’s a good thing for him.  As a young player, you have been given responsibility but things haven’t worked out for him,” Dujon told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“He still has a career ahead of him and shedding this responsibility might just help his cricket as time goes on,” he added.

Pooran captained the T20 team for 23 matches, winning 8 and losing 14 for a win ratio of 35 percent.

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