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“We know in India you have to bat long, put runs on the board, 400 minimum in the first innings really”
West Indies head coach Ottis Gibson has announced that he wants the West Indian batsmen to come back with a vengeance in the second Test against India in Mumbai after putting up a lacklustre performance in the first Test in Kolkata.
All-rounder Marlon Samuels was the only batsman to register a half-century for the West Indies in the entire match.
“There is only so much talking any coach can do,” Gibson said. “When you play five batsmen, and you sit down and stress the importance of those five batsmen, and you set yourself a challenge of batting a day and a half in the first innings, it is then up to those five batsmen to negotiate whatever the opposition bowlers throw at them and hang around for five days.
“(But) When you have a run-out and a couple of soft dismissals within those five batsmen then it puts pressure on everybody else. That is exactly what happened. We have to get better. We have to learn those mistakes and try not to repeat them.”
The West Indies batsmen simply had no answer to India pace bowler Mohammed Shami, whose reverse swing helped him claim nine wickets in the match.
The only batsman who looked comfortable was Shivnarine Chanderpaul, but his efforts were wasted as he continued to run out of partners.
When asked how the West Indies could improve their batting, Gibson said: “Try and bat three days. We won the toss in good batting conditions and we batted 70-odd overs. That is just not good enough. We know in India you have to bat long, put runs on the board, 400 minimum in the first innings really. So the 234 that we made was pretty average.
“We were little bit rusty coming in but we are not going to use that as an excuse. We still had our opportunities to make scores – we had six or seven guys who got starts and did not carry on. Only one guy got a half-century. When India batted only one or two of those guys got starts and made hundreds. And that was the difference.”
Gibson also pointed out that the West Indies’ five-batsman strategy helped them win six Test matches in a row prior to the Kolkata Test, but he added that it would only continue working if all the batsmen played their part.
“When you look at the result you sort of want to think that way (whether the five-batsmen plan works),” Gibson said. “That line-up is the one with which we have played the last three or four Test matches. We backed those guys and they did not perform as well as they did in the past. It is a two-match series so we have to look at the combination to make sure we still believe strongly that we can win here.”