We’re not a second-string team: WI captain

West Indies skipper Kraigg Brathwaite has said the squad that came to Bangladesh is not a second-string team and that they are capable of doing well at the international level.

Braithwaite interacted with the media on Wednesday evening during a virtual press conference.

Due to the Covid-19 situation, at least 12 regular members of the West Indies opted to stay out of this series in Bangladesh. So, the Cricket West Indies had to send a second-string and inexperienced team. But the stand-in captain of the Caribbeans says insists they are not second-string.

“I don’t see the guys here as second-string. I think they can perform and do well at the international level. I know they’re looking for the opportunity,” Braithwaite told the media.

“I think we’ve a good team here. A few guys haven’t played international cricket, and some haven’t played in a little while. I know this team is fully capable of doing well at the international level. I want to lead from the front as a leader. It is my job as an opening batsman to get runs and build a foundation for the team,” he said.

West Indies are among the first teams that started playing cricket after the Covid-19 outbreak. They toured England in June-July, and later they visited New Zealand. But this time around, they have to face the hosts in completely different sort of conditions.

“These are (England, NZ and Bangladesh) completely different conditions. I think the principles still remain in terms of batsmanship. For me, being balanced at the crease is the key whether I’m playing spin or pace. It was decent in England, there was the improvement in New Zealand as well,” Brathwaite said.

After winning the first Test against England by four wickets in Southampton, West Indies lost six successive games before coming to Bangladesh. Despite this lean display at the international level, the West Indian captain said he is optimistic about doing well against the Tigers.

After arriving in Bangladesh, West Indies are maintaining a strict three-day in-room quarantine due to Covid-19 protocol. They might be allowed to host intra-squad training camp from Thursday if they return negative in the second Covid-19 test. They gave samples on Wednesday, and the result is expected to out on the same night.

Brathwaite explained their plan to get back to the field saying: “On the first day back on the field, you have to get familiar with the atmosphere. You probably do some physical work to get the lungs going on. You don’t want to go too hard. I think it would just be a generalised session to get everything going. From day two or day three, you’ll be pushing yourself extra.”

The series will begin with the first ODI on January 20 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium, the second ODI will also take place at the same venue on January 22.

The third and final ODI will be played on January 25 at Zahur Ahmed Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chattogram along with the first Test starting from February 3. The second and final Test will take place in Dhaka from February 11.

Source: United News of Bangladesh