There is something about these West Indian cricketers and their swagger. There are very few who enjoy playing and watching cricket as much as the Carribeans do. Although their domination in world cricket has seen a fall, their love for Cricket has not faded away.
T20 cricket has been the biggest positive for cricket in the Caribbean in recent times. Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell and the list of West Indian T20 specialists just goes on. They are truly great ambassadors of the T20 game and have made big contributions for this format’s rise all over the world.
These players not only possess charisma but also have the character to win games for their teams from difficult positions. And the current West Indian team does not have any dearth of such players.
Here is a list of 5 Windies players that India should be wary of in T20Is
1. Nicholas Pooran
Nicholas Pooran. (Photo Source: Twitter)
On January 6, 2015, tragedy struck Nicholas Pooran’s life when he met with a car accident that seemed strong enough to end his career. But his sheer determination to play the game did not end there. After having spent considerable time off the field, Pooran reconstructed his career and soon found his way to the West Indies team.
This talented southpaw from Trinidad hits the ball neat and clean. He has a fearless approach to his game, which is crucial art when it comes to T20 cricket. Pooran was amongst the top 2 run-getters for Windies in their recent T20 series against England, Bangladesh and India.
His ability to attack and stitch some key partnerships in the middle order will be the opposition’s biggest worry. If India aims to do well, they must find a way to stop this young gun who looks in great shape after the 2019 World Cup.
2. Shimron Hetmyer
Shimron Hetmyer. (Photo by Philip Brown/Popperfoto via Getty Images)
Pooran and Shimron Hetmyer are the pillars of the West Indian middle order. These are players that don’t hold themselves back. Their only form of defence is singles and doubles. Shimron Hetmyer was the 3rd highest run-scorer in the Carribean Premier League and finished with an average of 40.
With his ability to hit big sixes, Hetmyer cashes in when the spinners are in action during the middle overs. His quick knocks pave the way for the finishers to go hard at the death, and this is the reason why Windies put a big score on the board more often than not.
With Indian spinners like Chahal, Krunal and R Chahar up against him, Hetmyer will fancy himself to hit the ball with the turn and that might prove to be a big worry for India.
3. Carlos Brathwaite
Carlos Brathwaite. (Photo Source: Twitter)
“Remember the name” is the sentence that reverberates in the ears of every West Indian fan. It reminds them of that famous night in Kolkata, when Carlos Brathwaite struck 4 consecutive sixes off Stokes in the last over to win the T20 World Cup for WI.
Fans once again smelled that magical night when Carlos played a ‘Once in a generation knock’ against New Zealand in CWC19 at Manchester. He almost single-handedly took Windies to victory and that speaks volumes of the talent he possesses.
Brathwaite is a terrific all-rounder and the perfect finisher that any T20 team seeks. Carlos has 131 wickets in his T20 career so far and has also scored crucial runs at a strike rate of 144.68. In the absence of key bowlers like Bumrah, India may find it tough to handle his finishing touches in the death overs.
4. Andre Russell
Andre Russell. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)
Andre Russell is one of the most barbarous hitters that the cricket ball has ever seen. There is hardly any area in the field where this guy doesn’t hit the ball. And what’s so special about all those hits? They are all clean. When he hits, he absolutely smokes the ball out of the park and that brings the crowd along with the cars in the parking lot in action.
The addition of Russell has added a new dimension to this Windies side. Russell is not just a random power hitter. With over 17 fifties and 2 centuries in T20 cricket, he has developed himself into a proper batsman. Add 270 wickets to his batting record and you soon come to know how valuable Russell has been as a T20 cricketer.
He finished the IPL 2019 with 510 runs at an average of 56.67. Keeping him under control is going to be a big challenge for India in their upcoming tour of West Indies.
5. Sunil Narine
West Indies’ Sunil Narine. (Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP/Getty Images)
Sunil Narine is a magician. The variety of deliveries that comes out from his bowling hand knows no end. Carrom ball, doosra, quicker one, straighter one, knuckleball and not to forget his most basic regular off turn which is also pretty tough to handle.
Narine is amongst the very few cricketers who have a cool head. He knows exactly what to do when the team is desperately in search of a wicket. Narine boasts of a mammoth 370 wickets in his T20 career! What makes him an even better player is his ability to be a floating pinch hitter.
Teams like KKR have used Narine’s batting skills in the powerplay and that has often provided them with healthy starts. His miserly wicket-taking spell along with his hitting ability might pose a conundrum for India.
Fans are surely in for some entertainment when the hard hitters from West Indies face a young & talented side from India. The latter may well be the favourites, but they surely need to prepare well to have a chance against this West Indian side in T20Is.
Written by Ameya Thakur
- World Cup
- Andre Russell
- Carlos Brathwaite
- Nicholas Pooran
- Shimron Hetmyer
- Sunil Narine
- West Indies
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