A confident West Indies team arrived in St Vincent on Sunday afternoon and had a three-hour training session at the Arnos Vale Sports Complex on Monday. After the session Head Coach Ottis Gibson spoke to the media and looked ahead to the upcoming matches against Zimbabwe in the Digicel Series on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. First ball on each day is 9:30 am (8:30 am Jamaica Time).
Ottis Gibson (right) and Sulieman Benn during a fielding drill.
Gibson on the mood in the camp:
“We lost the first match of the One-Day Series and fought back to win the second. I told the players that winning is never easy. They will have to work hard and fight hard for victories. We have seen signs that we are improving. If we keep doing that (improving) we should be good in the matches to come. As a team going forward, this series is very important to us, so this week we will be looking to build more momentum … but ultimately the most important things in the coming months will be the ICC T20 World Championship at home and then the Digicel Series against South Africa.”
Dwayne Bravo returns:
“It is good to have Dwayne Bravo back in the team. He has only just come back and already you can feel the energy he brings to the team. He is a very important player and already the players have perked up with him around. He brings a lot of energy – he’s an athletic fielder, very skilful bowler and can win a match for you with the bat. He is a three-dimensional cricket – batting, bowling and fielding – and certainly strengthens us as a team.”
Darren Bravo gets his chance:
“I have not seen much of Darren, but I know a lot has been said about him. I threw a few balls to him in the nets and he looks a very good player. As I said before, this series is very important to us and it is important that we give some players an opportunity so we can see what they have in them. This week will be important for him as a player.”
Sarwan has been given more time:
“Ramnaresh Sarwan is very important to the team. He was with us in Guyana and seeing around was very good. He had a serious injury with his back. At the moment he could benefit from some more time to get fully ready. I don’t want to rush him back too soon. The last thing we want would be to rush him back and lose him for the long-term. It is a pre-caution to allow him to get 100 percent ready for the major international assignments we have later this year.”
SQUAD: Chris Gayle (Captain), Adrian Barath, Sulieman Benn, David Bernard, Darren Bravo, Dwayne Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Narsingh Deonarine, Nikita Miller, Kieron Pollard, Denesh Ramdin, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach, Darren Sammy.
TEAM MANAGEMENT: Joel Garner (Manager), Ottis Gibson (Head Coach), David Williams (Assistant Coach), C.J. Clark (Physiotherapist), Hector Martinez Charles (Strength and Conditioning Co-ordinator), Richard Berridge (Video & Statistical Analyst), Philip Spooner (Media Officer), Virgil Browne (Massage Therapist).