PERTH, Australia, CMC – Chairman of selectors Clive Lloyd believes India are formidable opponents but says a disciplined West Indies effort can see the reigning World champions beaten, when the two teams meet at the WACA Ground here Friday.
India are unbeaten in three outings in the ICC Cricket World Cup while West Indies have lost two of four games, and both teams will be eyeing victory as crucial especially with a place in the next round looming.
“The point is that we have a good bowling attack, good batsmen, and a good all-round side,” Lloyd said here yesterday.
“If we bat, we have to make enough runs to win and defend. We do have the bowlers to do so. This pitch is quite good – it’s got very constant bounce. It’s a good cricket pitch. They (India) have won three out of three, so we can’t fault their bowling or their batting.”
He added: “One-day cricket is about who plays well on the day and gets their disciplines right. If we do that, we give them a good run for their money. They’re defending champions and they want to be in this World Cup as long as possible.
“It’s obvious that this game is important to us, and to you for that matter. We want to do well and if we play to our ability, we’ll be able to do so.”
India opened their campaign with a 76-run victory over Pakistan and followed up by crushing South Africa by 130 runs. They overpowered minnows United Arab Emirates to win by nine wickets.
Despite India’s form, Lloyd said he was hoping to see West Indies put up a strong challenge.
“India’s always a formidable side and they’ll continue to be so. But when you set a standard, people expect you to keep that standard all the time,” he pointed out.
“India are doing well, but I hope they don’t do too well on Friday. It will be a good game. India will be good opponents. They’ve been playing well and we’ve been sporadic in our play but we’re hoping that this pitch will suit us quite well. It should be quite an exciting game.”
West Indies’ recent record against India does not make for good reading. They have lost their last four series and have suffered defeats in 13 of their last 20 meetings.
On last October’s ill-fated tour, they won the first game of the series convincingly before going on to lose the aborted series.
Lloyd noted the Caribbean side was coming up against the core of the same squad from last year.
“It’s nearly the same sort of side. Your pace bowling seems to be pretty good and you have a good spin bowler in (Ravi) Ashwin,” the legendary former Windies captain said.
“You’ve got a good variety, and I think you have good all-round strength. Virat Kohli has been a tremendous player over the last two years and now you have the likes of (Shikhar) Dhawan coming through. I think you should do well.”