Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
New Zealand all-rounder James Neesham has announced that it was “a little bit disappointing” that his side fell “20 or 30 short” of a par score at Barbados during their first innings on the first day of the third Test against the West Indies.
Neesham scored a vital 78 as the Blackcaps were bowled out for 293 thanks to West Indies spinner Sulieman Benn’s fourth five-wicket haul.
“I think we were a bit short. I think if we had got north of anywhere between 320-330 , it would would have been a really good effort,” Neesham said. “So to fall 20 or 30 short is a little bit disappointing but there’s a lot in it for the bowlers and if we get a couple out early, it will be interesting.”
Speaking about his five-wicket haul, Benn said: “I think this is the worst I have bowled for this series. In saying that, I worked hard through the series, so probably the results came today. If someone had said we would bowl them out for 280-290 and be batting on the first day, you would take that.”
Benn noted that the pitch had a lot in it for the bowlers on day one, but he added that he was unsure whether that would be the case later on in the match.
“I know on the first day in Barbados you always get a bit of assistance, because of the moisture in the pitch,” Benn said. “It spun in the evening as well. Normally it does a bit first day, and rest of the days it flattens out. You get a little bit, obviously when the balls get older it tends to be good for batting. Kensington Oval always has bounce for spinners. So you want to get the ball into good areas. A little bit of turn also, so that was good.”
Neesham also pointed out that the outfield was a lot quicker than he expected.
“I think the outfield on this ground is a lot quicker than the ones we’ve played on in the first two Tests,” Neesham said. “There wasn’t a whole lot different going on with the shot-making or the bowling. It was just when you did get one in the gap, it raced away for four as opposed to pulling out for one or two.”
Neesham also conceded that he was disappointed to have been run out on 78.
“Anytime you get to the 60s or 70s, you start looking at that mark,” Neesham said. “It was a little bit disappointing, the mix-up between me and Mark, called at the same time and there was a little bit of miscommunication going on but I’ll take that on my shoulders. It was probably my call. It was a little bit disappointing to get out that way, but I think you’d move and get on with the rest of the game.”