By Neto Baptiste
The recent series win against Bangladesh is not a reason to discard all-rounder Jason Holder as captain of the West Indies Test team.
This is the sentiment of former West Indies fast bowler, Sir Curtly Ambrose, who commended stand-in captain Kraigg Brathwaite on the way he handled the pressure, but believes Holder is still a viable option who should not be ignored.
“Yes, Kraigg Brathwaite has done well and he was Jason’s deputy for a little bit, so with having both of them we have two guys we can call on to lead the team on any given day. I don’t think that because of the success we had in Bangladesh we should just discard Jason Holder like that, so we can’t just base it on that because even if we had a different captain besides Jason over those last few years, I am not convinced the results would have been much different,” he said.
West Indies wrapped up the two Test series with a 17-run victory in the second match which ended Sunday. Antiguan spinner Rahkeem Cornwall picked up nine wickets in the match and 14 overall, while there were also standout performances from Kyle Mayers, Nkrumah Bonner and Brathwaite.
Sir Curtly believes that the performance of some players will make a strong argument for their inclusion in the squad going forward.
“This team has been so successful and most of the guys in this team have been very consistent, so you can’t just discard these guys just like that so one, they [selectors] are under pressure. It simply means the competition for places will be high and some guys who may feel they could walk in and out of West Indies cricket as they like will be under pressure. So competition is healthy and it can only make the cricket better,” he said.
However, The legendary fast bowler who claimed a total of 405 wickets in 98 Tests, commended the team for playing what he called “fearless cricket” even with the odds stacked against them going into the series.
“One, winning the series two-nil certainly is a great achievement and two, and more importantly, before these guys left for Bangladesh, not many people gave them a chance. Most people thought they would have been massacred and that they had no chance of competing let alone, beating Bangladesh. I remember doing a couple of interviews prior to the trip and said that these guys have nothing to lose so they may spring a few surprises and all they have to do is just go and play fearless cricket,” Sir Curtly said.
In the first Test, West Indies chased 395 – the fifth highest successful pursuit in Test history – to win a remarkable first Test thanks to debutant Kyle Mayers’ unbeaten 210.