West Indies looking to finish tour on high note
Sydney, January 2
The West Indies have gained some confidence out of their series loss to Australia and are looking to finish their underwhelming tour on a high in the final Sydney Test, captain Jason Holder said Saturday.
The eighth-ranked Windies were trounced in the first two Tests in Hobart and Melbourne with the Australians yet to be dismissed and conceding only 10 wickets in the thumpings.
The West Indies, who will be playing in their first Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground in 15 years, symbolising their declining reputation, will be trying to prevent the Australians from sweeping the series and possibly returning to the top of the Test rankings.
Sunday’s final Test will be the Windies’ chance to show they have been improving on tour, although they have a scant winning chance against Steve Smith’s team. In a sign of the vast gulf between the two sides in this series, Australia have scored 131.30 runs per wicket loss to the West Indies’ 24.31.
“We fought really well in the last two days of the last Test match and it gives us some confidence going into this one,” Holder told reporters. “It is important that we build on that and make sure we finish this Test match on a high.”
Holder said his bowlers needed to improve for the Sydney finale. “We have basically leaked runs both sides of the wicket,” he said. “We need our bowlers to be a lot more disciplined. I have spoken about it from the first Test match and we got a little better in the second Test match but we are nowhere near where we are supposed to be.”
Holder said an injury to Devendra Bishoo means the tourists have only one recognised spinner to take into the Sydney Test, while Australia will play two spinners in Nathan Lyon and Stephen O’Keefe for the first time in a home Test in a decade at the SCG.
“We have been accustomed to a lot of spin in the Caribbean so hopefully our batsmen can get into that a lot better than we have during this series,” Holder said. “We are basically down to one spinner with Bishoo being unavailable for this Test match. So we just have to work with what we have. I’m sure Kraigg (Brathwaite) might have to come in and bowl some more overs.”