Despite being “outplayed” and losing the Test series 2-1 to England, West Indies skipper Jason Holder has no regrets in terms of the team selected for the tour and still believes the current squad has what it takes to move up the Test Championship table.
Holder, speaking following his team’s 269-run loss in the final Test against England at Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester yesterday, said the Windies are not down and out after losing back-to-back matches to surrender the Wisden Trophy.
“We are disappointed with the result but I will stick to what I said before. I still think this team has got what it takes to be at least mid-tier in the World Test Championship and move up the rankings and we’ve seen glimpses of that throughout this series and we’ve seen glimpses in Afghanistan and against India before that,” said Holder.
“The difficulty with that is that we’ve only played two series in the World Test Championship, which would have been India and England and we still got a lot of series pending to play and hopefully we can get them in but I think more or less, we’re not down and out. We got lots of cricket to play,” he insisted.
Looking back at the first international tour to be played during the Covid-19 pandemic, Holder said the visitors have had quite a few positives in the series but said that “a few more conversions of the starts we got would have done us a lot better.”
“I felt the bowlers really tried in conditions that were pretty tough at times. Also we didn’t field as well as we probably could’ve and those things we could definitely control.”
In terms of the players that made the trip, Holder said “I was very happy with the team we got here.”
“(Darren) Bravo, (Shimron) Hetmyer or (Keemo) Paul would have played,” he said.
“The way we’ve gone as a batting unit particularly, we haven’t had the consistency we were looking for. I think the squad we got here was the squad to do it (win the series).
“I am happy with the guys that came and happy with the work they put in prior to the tour and it is just unfortunate the way it finished, but more or less there are lots of positives for this group.
“I am not that disappointed with the overall group. Yes we will be disappointed with the result but England is a really good side in their back yard and statistics will show that. Not many teams come here and beat England in England,” Holder pointed out.
Speaking about being in a bio-secure bubble for two months, Holder said it has taken a toll on the touring party but praised his players and the extended squad for the way they handled it.
“It is tough to constantly get up and you’re here and you open your curtains and you see the cricket ground. You’re not going on a bus as you normally would do and see some kind of pedestrian or something like that. It has been challenging mentally and a lot of the guys have felt it and coming closer to home it probably gets a little more difficult, but more or less I think the guys have done exceptionally well in terms of keeping their focus in the last Test match,” said Holder.
“Obviously we were probably outplayed but I think we had a lot of positives in this Test series and I think generally as a group, I think we have shown signs of improvement as well,” he added.