After 20 years of free-falling in test cricket, is it possible that the West Indies are finally setting a solid foundation to compete against the top 7 test nations?
There’s an undercurrent of excitement among ardent West Indians fans, who relished the 4th innings fight put up to ensure an unlikely draw in the first test match against England in the current home series. Fuel is being added to the fire with another fightback currently underway in the 2nd test match.
The backbone of the resistance has been Kraig Brathwaite (22 years, 145 days), Darren Bravo (26 years, 78 days), Jermaine Blackwood (23 years, 156 days), Jason Holder (23 years, 171 days) alongside veteran Marlon Samuels. The bowling department has not been as consistent with Jerome Taylor, Kemar Roach, and a returning Devendra Bishoo struggling on flat and lifeless pitches.
Brathwaite average (36.96), a dour batsman who’s prepared to grind out an inning is in contrast to those that have gone before him – Greenidge, Hunte, Gayle, Haynes, Frederick, has provided stability at the top. The search for the 2nd opener seems destined to continue as a half century by veteran Devon Smith seems unlikely to lead to continued consistency.
Darren Bravo (42.78) has not been at his fluent best so far, but his 6 centuries, an average of 42 and highest score of 218 is nothing to scoff at.
Jermaine Blackwood (48.25) progressed quickly into the West Indies team and impressed many with his tenacity and ability to successfully take on a challenge. A tightening of his technique will only make him better.
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