Lara: Lasting power of West Indies doubtful
Brian Lara believes the West Indies will need to consider the Tests against England as four-day games since the visitors lack the firepower to “last five days”.
The 51-year-old former skipper said while the West Indies have a formidable bowling attack, their batting is a concern.
“They (West Indies) have to be able to pounce immediately. England are not beaten very easily at home and are overwhelming favourites,” Lara was quoted as saying by BBC Sport.
“They have to hit the road running and stamp their authority on England. I don’t think they can last five days, so they have to take these games in four days. They have to establish a lead and keep it.”
Lara, who scored a record 11,953 runs for the West Indies in 131 Tests, said adaptability to the English conditions would be key for the West Indies, who are the holders of the Wisden Trophy after winning 2-1 in the Caribbean last year. The former captain said it would be a great achievement if the team can win the series as they have not won any in England since 1988.
“It’s going to be a series that’s watched all around the world and everybody is hoping to see a competitive series,” said Lara, who scored 34 Test centuries. “It would mean a lot to all West Indians if they could win.”
Another former captain, legendary fast bowler Courtney Walsh, thinks Kemar Roach is a “genuine great” and can “easily” achieve the milestone of 300 Test wickets with proper “workload management”.
Roach, who has 193 wickets in 56 Tests, will be a key fast bowler for the visitors when they take the field at Ageas Bowl in Southampton on Wednesday.
“Workload management is something that they can look at. I don’t think he has played a lot of shorter versions of the game. But it’s up to him as an individual as well to set the standards, set the goals he wants to achieve,” Walsh told ESPNcricinfo.
Walsh, the owner of 519 Test wickets, is impressed by the work ethic and patience shown by Roach over the years.
“... his patience shows he will stick around. He’s a genuine great. His achievement shows that. What I like about him is his mannerism: he’s always cool and collected and he’s prepared to work.”