West Indies vs England 2019: 4 things we learnt from the Test series
After a very long time, we saw West Indies put up a solid display in two successive matches and win a Test series against a Test-playing nation other than Zimbabwe or Bangladesh. Last year, they had even failed to beat Sri Lanka at home despite the visiting side going through a rough time.
This victory, the first one for Windies against a major Test nation since they defeated New Zealand at home in 2012, is seen by many as the possible beginning of a resurgence of West Indian Test cricket.
It is hard to say whether this is an accurate assessment but the victory was certainly heartening, not just for home fans, but for cricket lovers around the world.
The sight of West Indian fast bowlers wreaking havoc with pace and skill on visiting batsmen was highly gratifying for anyone who loves cricket and is aware of its history.
England, on the other hand, have been dealt with a grievous blow after experiencing the high of a 3-0 victory in Sri Lanka. With the Ashes just months away, there are serious concerns about the state of their Test side.
So, with the eventful series coming to an end, we can look at the major ramifications arising out of West Indies’ victory. Are West Indies back as a top side or are England getting worse in the longer format?
Let’s look at the key things we can deduce from this 3-match series:
#4 Jason Holder emerges as a leader
Having been appointed the captain at a very young age, Jason Holder was bound to struggle with a very brittle team. But he had the backing of the great Clive Lloyd and the good wishes of many others.
The calmness and maturity he showed were signs of a good leader but results weren’t in his favour. His inclination to talk to former greats like Lloyd and Brian Lara, though, suggested a great desire to learn.
This series has seen him end all doubts and emerge as a truly respectable and capable leader. His bowling has become very effective and the five-wicket haul in the unhelpful conditions of India last year had already proved his mettle.
The double-hundred he scored in the first Test of this series was a clinching proof of his batting abilities that have been on display many times before. His match-saving hundred on England’s last tour to the Caribbean in 2015 had been a portent of what was to come.
His ascension to the top in the list of world’s best all-rounders has given him the moral authority to ask his players to perform. By leading from the front, he has set a great example also and his tactics were right on the mark as well.
Everyone seems to like him and the signs are in favor of him becoming the same sort of figure for West Indies that Brendon McCullum was for New Zealand.