FORMER West Indies head coach Phil Simmons has questioned the capability of the team’s selectors following their second T20I defeat in India, on Sunday, which saw the squad go 2-0 down with one more match to play on Sunday. Simmons believes the selection panel just doesn’t understand the short format of the game, as well as how to utilise the bevy of players at their disposal.
“It just sounds and looks like who’s selecting the team don’t understand what the T20 format needs and what is going on with this team. The roles of people are not being defined,” Simmons said to ESPN. He referenced Denesh Ramdin’s use as a batsman in the top-order as an example of confusion in the lineup, and reiterated the selectors don’t know how to stabilise the upper-order, something he believes India have perfected.
“I think when you’re selecting a team, you have to make sure you have the right people for each phase of the T20 format. And if you don’t have the right people at the top of it, as India have shown with their three in Rohit (Sharma), Shikhar (Dhawan) and whenever Virat (Kohli) is there, they have that balance.
They provide that stability for the rest of the team,” lamented the former Windies all-rounder.
With Shai Hope, Shimron Hetmyer and Ramdin used as makeshift openers so far in the absence of batsmen like Evin Lewis, Chris Gayle and Lendl Simmons, Simmons said the flaw in the batting occurs at the very start. “With West Indies only having makeshift openers, you only create problems for yourself because when they fail early on, the middle-order doesn’t have any time to settle, and that’s where the struggle is coming from,” he contended.
He believes that with a steady opening pair, the tone would be set for batters like Darren Bravo, as well as big-hitters like Kieron Pollard and Nicolas Pooran to feel more confident in the wicket; something he thinks the team is drastically lacking.