West Indies face must-win situation against New Zealand
Manchester: Their campaign deflated after early promise, the West Indies face a do-or-die battle against a confident-looking New Zealand in a crucial ICC World Cup 2019 tie in Manchester on Saturday.
The Windies started their World Cup campaign with a bang, demolishing Pakistan by seven wickets.
But since then, things have gone from bad to worse for the Caribbeans and they have suffered three defeats (against Australia, England and Bangladesh) while the game against South Africa was washed out.
The West Indies are currently lying seventh in the 10-team standings with just three points in their kitty and they can’t afford any further loss to stay in the mix for a semifinal spot.
The West Indies would be smarting from a string of losses against Bangladesh, including the defeat in their last World Cup game despite posting a big total.
The West Indies posted a huge 321 for eight against the South Asians, a target which the Tigers chased down in 41.3 overs with seven wickets in hand.
Barring Chris Gayle, the West Indies’ batting has started clicking but the performance of their bowlers would be a major cause of concern for skipper Jason Holder.
While Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer and Holder have been holding the fort with the bat, Gayle and Andre Russell have let down the team badly.
On the bowling front, all the West Indian bowlers looked ordinary and leaked runs against Bangladesh. And the likes of Sheldon Cottrell, Shannon Gabriel and Oshane Thomas need to pull up their socks before it is too late.
The Kiwis, on the other hand, are sitting pretty at the second spot with nine points, which includes four wins out of five games with the match against India being washed out.