Cricket World Cup 2019 team preview: West Indies
We know that West Indies will pack some punch, but just how far can they go in the Cricket World Cup 2019?
ODI ranking: 8
World Cup wins: 2
Final appearances: 3
World Cup record
Tournament appearances: 11
Ways they can win it
Up top, through the brute force of Chris Gayle on his ODI swansong. In the middle, through the artistry of Shimron Hetmyer. Or at the death, through the unrivalled power of Andre Russell. Throw in the raw pace of Oshane Thomas and Shannon Gabriel, and the guile of Kemar Roach, and the Windies have an intoxicating mix. Whatever happens, it’ll be fun to watch.
For all their individual brilliance, this is not a side that wins many games. They haven’t won a bilateral or trilateral ODI series in five years (that’s 18 attempts) and with matches coming thick and fast at the World Cup that feel-good factor around West Indian cricket following their Test series victory over England could dissipate quickly if they don’t start strongly.
Team professor: Jason Holder
A shrewd operator who understands the significance of the role placed upon him and the limitations within it, Holder rises above the chaos that perpetually threatens to engulf cricket in the Caribbean. Ian Bishop recently said there are growing similarities with the captaincy of Clive Lloyd, and there can be no higher praise than that.
Mad dog: Andre Russell
Russell recently credited Chris Gayle with “changing my life in terms of power hitting”, revealing his fellow Jamaican had told him to start wielding a meatier willow during the 2016 World T20. Advice heeded, no bat is hitting the ball cleaner and further in the world right now than Russell’s, as evidenced in this season’s IPL where he redefined what’s possible in a run chase.
Your next favourite player: Oshane Thomas
A breakout star from the 2018 Caribbean Premier League, Thomas was electric on his T20I debut against India last November, ripping out Sharma and Dhawan with 91mph rockets and leading his captain Carlos Brathwaite to declare he could be the next Holding or Garner. A maiden ODI five-for followed versus England in March to mark him out as one of the most exciting young quicks in the world.
Weak link (by CricViz)
Death-overs bowling. Since July 2017, West Indies have an economy rate of 8.53 in the last 10 overs, the highest of all teams in that period (including Associates)*.
*As of April 24, 2019
West Indies squad
Jason Holder (capt), Fabian Allen, Carlos Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Shannon Gabriel, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope, Evin Lewis, Ashley Nurse, Nicolas Pooran, Kemar Roach, Andre Russell, Oshane Thomas
Betfair Exchange odds: 23.0
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