World Cup winning West Indies captain Clive Lloyd on Wednesday threw his weight behind the troubled hosts saying, “This West Indies team can play much better than they have done so far in the Super Eights.”
After three successive defeats in the Super Eights, the hosts face the exit door and need to win all three remaining matches against South Africa, Bangladesh and England to have any hope of reaching the semifinals.
The three defeats to Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka have left the Caribbean fans disappointed, former players looking for scapegoats and organisers fearing for the financial implications of seeing even emptier stadiums for the remaining matches.
Lloyd, the most successful West Indies captain of all time who led them to victory in the 1975 and 1979 World Cup finals and a runners-up spot in 1983, said he would do his utmost to lift morale.
“I hope to motivate the players by making them realise the pride of representing the West Indies at cricket,” said Lloyd, who was also a former coach, manager and is now an adviser. “We have a lot of young and inexperienced players, who have not been exposed to much international cricket and they need backing,” Lloyd added.
Captain Brian Lara has been singled out as the main culprit for the team’s demise, with former fast bowler Michael Holding demanding his removal as skipper.
Even a ten-day break, for which some players headed home to rest, has not been met with enthusiasm by some former players. “We are hearing they need time to go home and relax and that’s unbelievable in the middle of the tournament when they should be representing their people. Aren’t other teams tired?” questioned former captain Richie Richardson.
Another former fast bowling great Joel Garner asked, “Going home, for what? You canít walk off in the middle of the battle. We have to be together and correct the errors.”
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Post InfoThis entry was posted on Thursday, April 5th, 2007 and is filed under Cricket.
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