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The 'Sun Is Shining': Reggae Style

Test captain-on-debut, Andrew Strauss, would have been found scratching his head in the England team viewing deck at Sabina Park. And post match, the rushed-in skipper had some difficulty in forming intelligible answers for the media after the West Indies epic victory. This latest strain to the proverbial English boat, has left it sitting precariously on the waterfall's edge - right next to Australia.

This innings defeat of England, has breathed life back into Caribbean cricket. Be it Jerome Taylor's Man-of-the-Match spell in the second innings, the developing promise of Suleiman Benn, the resurrection of Sarwan, the stalwart Nash, or the exhibitionist abilities of their captain, the magic is evidently returning to the West Indies.

Now some may be thinking, "he's getting ahead of himself here", "it's a lone victory over an out-of-sorts English side", "what is he on about?!". I would beg to differ.

Preceding this series, the West Indies toured New Zealand, in what many considered would be a 'chore tour', only being played out to keep the ICC content. Even their greatest fan, Tony Cozier, was struggling to find much appeal in the series.

However, the series seemed to have awoken the desire of old to win and enjoy their cricket, which had evaded the side since the 80's. Remarkable performances from Chanderpaul and Gayle, were witnessed consistently, but were expected. But it was the responsibility taken up by Nash, Sarwan, Taylor, Benn, and Powell in particular, which has brought a fresh sense of change to West Indian cricket. Although the test series with New Zealand drawn, and the ODIs lost 2-1 (decided by D/L decided match which the WI looked like to win), things were changing.

And this test win at Sabina Park supports this theory. It was a sight for the sore eyes of many fans that have waited for this day to come for almost two decades. That a Chanderpaul innings was not depended on for this victory, speaks volume of the growing maturity of this team. Taylor and Benn were phenomenal, and their partnership will sure deliver similar memorable results in the future.

We will watch with great anticipation, if this cricketing super power of old can invigorate this rekindled flame and cause Strauss' England a great deal more torment and pain.


4 comments

kebab said...

(I'll let you all know before I start, this article is, in my eyes, 'untrue'.)

I thank you so very much, Ankit, for making my job to verbalise how ridiculous your arguments are so easy by your comments about "getting ahead of himself..." etcetera, because that is exactly what you are doing. Even though I am heartened by the Windies making a notable comeback to the world of cricket, they still have a leaps and bounds to go before they become as revolutionary or amazing as you seem to play them out to be.

The fact of the matter is that New Zealand had a tight tussle with them in both test matches (a close test match with New Zealand lasting 5 days tells you the West Indies are not a very strong test side) and the West Indies were utterly worthless in the ODIs save Chris Gayle with bat in hand. A few 20- and 30-run innings here and there are not categorised as 'responsible' or 'remarkable'.

I was, unfortunately, far from alive when the likes of Malcolm Marshall and Viv Richards played our wonderful game, but I am well-informed enough to know this West Indies outfit is far from their superiority and it will take many years to come, not an innings against England, till they show any resemblence.

I may sound like a buzzkill as I am deriding, but it is nothing against the Windies, just this article's several misperceptions of the team. Some people just need to land their plane back on the ground instead of fantasising from the statosphere about mundane happenings.

Congratulations to the West Indies on a fine innings victory, but let's not start talking of any "majic" returning just yet. It was, after all, one game against a depleted (of form) English side.

Ankit said...

I can appreciate and accept your view on this post. However I stand firm in my views, and I believe the omens bide a good future for the West Indies.

Ayush said...

Wow!! I'm am stunned. An attack of this proportion has not been seen on TMR for years.

Kebab, buzzkill you definitely are not. However, I think you are a tad more cynical wrt to the Windies than warranted in my humble opinion.

While I don't believe they have yet turned the tide, I do believe they are a team on the up. With a Dhoni-esque captain and a top and middle order with a far greater degree of purpose and solidarity I think they can now genuinely profess to beat the best on their day.

If only the 2nd Test hadn't been such a farce, we would've had a better indication of their progress - for getting to the top is far easier than staying there.

Ankit, keep the glass half full theory in full flow.

kebab said...

Fully agree with you Ayush. Well said too. Just on that piece of advice to Ankit. Could we please keep it to a glass half full of reality, not full of gobbledegook?

(Apologies for the typos in the first protest. My fingers were a bit too fired up with rage over this article =( )

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