Windies wary of complacency with series win beckoning: Powell

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GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Apr 8, CMC — Opener Kieran Powell said Saturday West Indies were cognisant of the danger of becoming overwhelmed by their historic win in the opening One-Day International against Pakistan, as they targetted a series-clinching victory in Sunday’s second contest.
The Caribbean side pulled off a thrilling four-wicket victory in Friday’s first game at the Guyana National Stadium and are aware another positive result will hand them their first series win over a higher-ranked side in five years.
Powell told media here even though they had celebrated the outstanding effort, they were also wary of allowing complacency to step in.
“That’s one of the things we addressed in team meeting [after the first game]. We have a win, we savour it, we celebrate it but we don’t want to get complacent and think we have a win and end up losing the series 2-1,” the 27-year-old said.
“So we have to come tomorrow and play as if the series is nil-nil and try and get a win, and potentially get the lead which would be an unassaible lead in the series.”
Having never successfully chased a total of over 300 in a one-dayer, West Indies made history when they overhauled a target of 309 to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
They were propelled by Jason Mohammed’s scintillating unbeaten 91 off 58 deliveries and left-hander Powell’s steady 61 from 86 balls.
Batting at number three, Powell helped rebuild the innings after Chadwick Walton departed cheaply in the fifth over with just 23 runs on the board — adding 68 for the second wicket with Evin Lewis (47) and a further 65 for the third wicket with Shai Hope (24).
Playing only his fourth game since returning to international cricket following a self-imposed two-year break, Powell said at no stage did he or the team panic during the run chase.
“Personally I was pretty calm. We had a plan in mind when I was batting and we just needed to get to around the 200-run mark by the time 40 overs were gone,” he explained.
“Even though I started slowly I knew I could always make up in the end. Obviously I would have loved to have batted a bit deeper but Jason Mohammed played a fantastic innings there at the back end and so did Ashley Nurse, to get us over the line.
“Once we needed ten an over off the last ten overs, we should have been alright with wickets in hand so basically that’s what we played towards. I think that the team was pretty calm about it. Obviously in a situation like that when it gets down to the wire, guys could start to panic and get nervous and be jittery in the dressing room but I think everyone was pretty calm.”
With 32 ODIs under his belt, Powell is the most experienced of the current batsmen in the squad, having made his debut eight years ago.
And having played alongside some of the biggest names in contemporary Windies cricket, Powell said it was important he brought that knowledge to help the current youthful squad.
“Obviously paving played international cricket for a bit before this as well [and] being one of the most senior members in the team, I think the knowledge I have gained from other senior players that I would have played with in the past — be it a Chris Gayle, Marlon Samuels, [Ramnaresh] Sarwan or [Shiv] Chanderpaul — obviously I’ve retained that knowledge,” he explained.
“It’s something I can pass along, something that helps me stay calm out in the middle as well and I think that is the most important thing, that you’ve got to stay calm under pressure.
“Every international match is a pressure situation and being a young team, you don’t want guys to start panicking when something seems to be going wrong, when in the grand scheme of things everything is ok. It’s just a matter of offering that sense of calm.”

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