Jason Holder may be one of those rare International cricketers to go through the toughest path as a Captain where he has seen Windies team going from bad to worst in Test Cricket, and ODIs.
Windies had to play qualifiers to make it to the 2019 World Cup showed the world their struggles in the 50 over format and Holder was at the helm of the team.
Selectors leaving out many a senior player is a regular scenario in Windies cricket owing to multiple reasons. However, the move to bring back veteran Chris Gayle has worked well for them in the series against England. Two centuries and a scintillating 77 off 27 balls in the final ODI once again proved his worth at the top order. It’s not only an excellent comeback for the 39-year-old left-hander, but also a confidence booster for West Indies team just ahead of the World Cup.
Gayle had already played his last ODI series at home and will draw curtains to his extraordinary career after the World Cup. However, his presence at the top in the next few months will do wonders for Windies. Shai Hope at number three, Darren Bravo and Hetmyer at four and five makes it a strong middle order.
If Gayle can manage a start like what he had done against England in half of the matches in the World Cup, West Indies will fancy their chances to make it big to next rounds and cause damages to at least a few teams.
Their middle order is good to pick up the start and has three allrounders who can hit big in Carlos Brathwaite, Jason Holder, and Ashley Nurse. Oshane Thomas and Sheldon Cottrel have shown what they are capable of against a mighty England side in the past few weeks.
West Indies may still find an experienced partner for Gayle at the top instead of John Campbell who has played only four ODIs so far. Alzaari Joseph, Kemar Roach can further add strength to the pace bowling attack. Spin bowling is their major worry with Bishoo not as effective as they would have expected in the recent series. Roston Chase is a part-time option which West Indies can think of in the English conditions.
The games against England may have given West Indies right direction for the World Cup. The team looks stronger with the balance they have. It may depend a lot on the Universe Boss to give them a flying start at the top. They would expect Hope and Bravo to hold it through the middle overs and set for a big finish with Hetmyer, Brathwaite, Nurse, and Holder in the backend.
Let’s wait for Windies to play the most entertaining cricket which they are famous for and see how many teams will have an impact of Gayle Storms in England.