denesh ramdin
Denesh Ramdin (IANS Photo)

A depleted West Indies suffered another series defeat on their ongoing tour of India when they lost the second T20I in Lucknow to concede an unassailable 2-0 lead. Denesh Ramdin feels the absence of senior stars has contributed to their sorry show in the first two matches that saw them posting low totals.

The visitors lost a two-Test series 2-0 followed by a 1-3 defeat in a five-ODI series. However, their improvement in the ODIs and their T20 pedigree, it was expected they won’t be an easy prospect in the shortest format for the hosts. However, that wasn’t the case.

“It’s difficult to build a team given the current scenario,” Ramdin said on the eve of the third and final T20I to be played in Chennai on Sunday. “When you look at our T20 players they are in demand all over the world, so yes, we are suffering in that aspect. Our senior players did not turn up for the tour, and that’s one of the reasons why we are 2-0 down in this series.”

He continued, “It’s all about having food on the table. The players are good enough to be taken by a team in another part of the world, then I can’t stop a player who’s out there to improve.”

West Indies will welcome India’s decision to rest left-arm spinner Kuldeep Yadav for the final match. In the two matches, Kuldeep has taken 5 wickets while leaking just 45 runs in eight overs. “Guys haven’t been able to pick him [Kuldeep], and basically he was been one of the threats in the middle overs and unfortunately we couldn’t push on.”

Elaborating more on the issues plaguing their batting, the Ramdin said not capitalising on starts and lack of partnerships has also been behind their sorry show.
“We played our first game at Eden Gardens, where we were expecting to do well. But we didn’t adapt as well as we should. We didn’t string any partnerships either. T20 banks on momentum and partnerships, and we couldn’t do that. But [Shai] Hope and [Shimron] Hetmyer have had success, to transfer themselves from 50-over mindset to T20 cricket. They have tried their best, and one needs 10-12 balls to get a start, but they haven’t capitalised. A lot of T20 cricket is about momentum and we haven’t been able to build on it, he added.

With wickets in West Indies similar to that of India, the wicketkeeper-batsman expects his slow bowlers to bowl well in Chennai. “There’s a system in place. The wickets in WI are similar to India, slow and turning. On this wicket, with the square boundaries a bit bigger, it’s important our spinners bowl better tomorrow. On this wicket it is very important that we bowl the right lengths,” he observed.

The emergence of Right-arm pacer Oshane Thomas has been a positive for West Indies as he has time and again troubled Indian batsmen with pace and bounce. Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar said Thomas was a reminder of the glory days when West Indies boasted of world-class fast bowlers.

Ramdin said there are “some good pacemen coming through..But they lack in experience because our first-class series is so short. Some guys get injured and some get thrown into the big stage. But our first-class level and international level has a big gap. They still need to get up there in terms of fitness and accuracy.”