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T20 World Cup 2022

‘Down to a lack of pride’ – Andy Roberts questions commitment of West Indies players after first-round exit from T20 World Cup

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Fast-bowling great Andy Roberts has questioned the commitment of the current West Indies team following their first-round exit from the 2022 T20 World Cup.

Placed in Group B, West Indies lost to Scotland and Ireland to end last on the points table, crashing out of the 2022 T20 World Cup in the first round. Led by Nicholas Pooran, the Windies won by 31 runs against Zimbabwe, but it was not enough to carry them forward to the Super 12s.

The two-time defending champions had reached the Super 12 stage of the tournament last year but failed to advance further after winning a solitary game. Their early ouster this year has caused West Indies legend Roberts to criticise the group of players, also questioning the technique of the batters in their side.


Speaking on Good Morning JoJo, he said, “I can only blame our players for what is happening in our cricket. The players must shoulder the responsibility and decide from here on that they are going to improve their cricket. Until our batsmen, especially, improve on their batting, we’re not going anywhere.

“Right now what we have is a bunch of swipers — not batters,” he declared. “They think that hitting sixes is everything, but the rest of the world shows us that hitting sixes is not the only solution to T20 cricket. Batting, and batting properly, makes more sense. Our players have to go back and play four-day cricket so that they can learn to bat, instead of just swiping.”

The ODI World Cup winner in 1975 and 1979, Roberts questioned if the players are keen to get better at the sport and wondered if they have any pride in representing West Indies. “It comes down to a lot of things — commitment, and the desire to get better than you actually are because if we work hard at whatever we do, we can get better,” he reasoned. “It may come down to a lack of pride, who knows?”

He also picked out all-rounder Odean Smith specifically and wonder if he was fit enough to play the game at the international level. “I watched Odean Smith — after two balls you could see him [hyperventilating]. He [is] maybe fit to run five miles. He may pass the YoYo test [running aerobic fitness test during which a player is required to ‘shuttle’ between two cones that are placed 20m apart] but is he fit to run in and bowl for an over? It’s a different type of fitness required.”

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