5 Talking Points from India's victory over West Indies in the 1st Test
India have romped their way home to victory against West Indies in the 1st Test in four days, in the process claiming their biggest innings victory outside Asia, and their first in the Caribbean. Coach Anil Kumble had his camera out as the match was brought to a close, the visitors starting the four-match series off with a win by an innings and 92 runs, and Kumble starting off his tenure with a match which had many positives.
The two teams meet again for a second encounter at Sabina Park in Jamaica starting from Saturday. While the hosts have some serious thinking to do to get a footing back in the series, the visitors may be said to have the luxury of rotating the squad according to the conditions provided.
The most talked about issues from the Antigua Test, a great beginning to the Kohli-Kumble era in Indian cricket –
# 1 – Glaring defects in West Indies’ team selection
There are very few points of similarities between the West Indian side that is taking on India in the Test series and the one that was crowned world champions of the T20 format earlier this year in India. While T20 stalwarts like Chris Gayle, Sunil Narine and Dwayne Bravo are not available for selection in the Test team, there is still much scope for the current side to be tinkered with.
The hosts made a glaring mistake in the 1st Test of going in with only one genuinely fast pacer, Shannon Gabriel, who despite being the most troublesome bowler, bowled only 21 overs, less than even part-timer Roston Chase’s quota of overs. Jason Holder and Carlos Brathwaite’s 135kph pace was often found not probing enough to pair up capably enough with Gabriel with the new ball, and it seem they are part of the team more because of their batting capabilities.
Selectors clearly do not keep much faith with the middle order, and one batsman needs to be dropped to accommodate a second wicket taking bowler – a genuine quick of the ilk of Gabriel, or a spinner like Jomel Warrican if a drier wicket is on offer. If the opposition is allowed to bat for two days the game is lost even before it is begun.