DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, CMC – Captain Carlos Brathwaite said West Indies simply did not fire in the opening Twenty20 International of the three-match series against Pakistan here yesterday.
Playing at the Dubai International Stadium, West Indies were humbled by nine nine wickets, after being bundled out for a paltry 115 and then watching as Pakistan eased to their target with nearly five overs remaining. However, Brathwaite said West Indies were an attacking side and there were times when their brand of cricket would not pay dividends.
“We are an aggressive, exciting team. Two games ago we scored 240-odd and today we scored 115,” Brathwaite told reporters.
“We have ebbs and flows, ups and downs. Today it just didn’t come off for us. I don’t think we assessed the conditions quickly enough. A majority of the shots didn’t show situation awareness.
“I don’t want to say we just didn’t bat well [because] credit must go to Imad Wasim. He bowled fantastically well. Anytime you get five for 14 in an international game, you must be doing something right.”
He continued: “It’s a combination of good bowling, not as good execution on the batting front but these things happen. We’re an aggressive team as I said before and I won’t tell any of the guys to lose their aggression. It’s just a matter of being more situation aware going into tomorrow’s game and into the last one.”
Sent in, West Indies lost wickets steadily to plummet to 48 for eight in the 12th over and looked in danger of being dismissed for under 100 at one stage.
Most of their batsmen fell to injudicious strokes on a slow wicket and only all-rounder Dwayne Bravo with a top score of 55 off 54 balls, showed any character.
Brathwaite defended his side’s aggressive approach but noted they had failed to execute properly.
“We didn’t execute the way we wanted to but on another day, those same shots could’ve gone for boundaries and sixes and we would have been sitting 45, 50 for one after the first six [overs], setting a beautiful platform to then go on and score 140, 150 which looked like it would have been a winning total on the surface today,” said the all-rounder, in only his third game as skipper after taking over from the two-time World Cup-winning captain Darren Sammy who was shockingly sacked last month.
“Again, [we are an] aggressive, exciting team. When it comes off, it looks fine. There will be days like these when it doesn’t come off and there’s no blame to be [cast].
“[ We had a] slow start, we lost the game. [We have to keep our] chins up [and] move forward into tomorrow’s game.”
West Indies were undone by left-arm spinner Imad Wasim who opened the bowling and finished with the superb figures of five for 14 from his four overs – the first five-wicket haul in T20 Internationals by a Pakistani spinner.
The 27-year-old featured prominently for Jamaica Tallawahs in this year’s Caribbean Premier League, and Brathwaite said he had used his knowledge of the West Indies players well.
“Imad had a head start on us, playing in the CPL for Jamaica Tallawahs so he knew our batsmen,” Brathwaite pointed out.
“We knew him as well, we planned for him and on the day, his execution was better than ours. Again, I don’t want to take anything away from his spell. It was fantastic.”
West Indies take on Pakistan again today in the second T20 International at the same venue.