West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite has admitted that the 0-3 whitewash was indeed “embarrassing”, but said the fight they had shown with limited resources was the “hallmark” for the visitors in the just-concluded series. India defeated reigning world champions West Indies by six wickets in the final T20 on Sunday night to clean sweep the three-match series.
“I mean, three-nought looks bad, and it looks embarrassing for me as captain as well. But the performances and fight we gave and the fact that we came together to use our resources to the best of our abilities was the hallmark for this short series for me,” Brathwaite said at the post-match press conference.
“The team morale is up. What we are doing as a group is trying to find the best to use the resources we have. In the first game, we showed our fight, we showed our belief with the ball,” he said.
“In the second game, we were blown away, and in the third game we batted excellently, but the game was taken away from us by a massive partnership. We still fought till the end.”
Brathwaite also heaped praise on young batsman Nicholas Pooran, who smashed a 25-ball 53 on Sunday. “It wasn’t just about his (Pooran’s) big hitting. He played some reverse scoops and he paced his innings very well. Obviously, the sixes will take the highlight, but let’s not forget how slowly he started. Getting the pace of the wicket, lining up the bowlers and then choosing the right time to strike,” Brathwaite said.
“So massive credit to Nicholas who missed the first game, didn’t get a start in the second but he was always positive and. As a team, we want that performance again from him.”
Brathwaite said West Indies cricket needs its players to put up performances on a consistent basis. “And, you know, as a team that’s what we have — the ability for players to take the game away from the opposition and play a knock such as that (of Pooran). The challenge for us to do that on a more consistent basis. We know we have 3,4 match-winners in the side who can blow the opposition away,” he said.
He also hailed comeback man Darren Bravo, who scored 43 and put on a key partnership with Pooran to lay the foundation in the middle overs. “Darren Bravo’s knock was good as well. He laid the foundation in the middle overs. He batted all the way through, so we had good solid performances with the bat.
“Obviously, Nicholas gets the plaudits because he raised his bat, but credit must go to the opening pair as well for getting us to fifty in the first six. We had a lot of positives with the bat and it’s about replicating this game in and game out,” Brathwaite said.
Brathwaite said West Indies should take lessons from the just-concluded series to the forthcoming tour of Bangladesh.
“We need to take what we have learnt from this series so far and work on it, and come back to Bangladesh thinking this is the fourth game of the series as opposed to the starting of another series,” he said. “We had back-to-back games, we didn’t start as well as we wanted and by the time we got into the tour we had lost the series. So if we can get this performance into Bangladesh’s first game of the series, then we can look to come out on top there.”
The Windies captain was not happy with one of his deliveries in the 18th over being called a wide but said it would not be fair to blame the decision for the defeat in a game that went down to the wire. “I hope that anything I say now, I won’t be fined for. If I get immunity, I can answer truthfully. But, it’s down to interpretation,” Brathwaite said.
“In my opinion, Rishabh stepped away and stepped across, and if he was staying in his stance it would’ve hit his boots. And then he jumped inside his stance, so in my opinion it wasn’t a wide because of that. But you can’t look back at it. If one of the fours would’ve gone for one, then we would’ve won by three runs. So you can’t look at every single ball and think ‘this one decision, or that one decision cost us the game’. Need to give credit to Shikhar (Dhawan) and Rishabh (Pant) who played very well,” he added.