WEST Indies captain Jason Holder said there are three long days of cricket left in the first Test match against England, downplaying the success of the regional team on the second day, on Thursday.
West Indies would have been the happier team at stumps. After resuming the day on 35 for one, England were dismissed for 204 in the first innings. Holder, who had an ankle issue leading up to the first Test, only brought pain to the England batsmen grabbing Test-best figures of 6/42 in 20 overs. Fellow fast bowler Shannon Gabriel, who troubled the England top order, ended with 4/62 in 15.3 overs.
West Indies progressed to 57/1 before bad light ended play. John Campbell is the only batsman to be dismissed as fast bowler James Anderson trapped him leg before for 28. Opener Kraigg Brathwaite and Shai Hope closed on 20 and three respectively.
Holder, speaking with journalists, on Zoom, following the close of play, said, “It is very early days in this series, it is only two days into a Test series...we got to bat well. We’ve got to make sure we put this first innings to bed by posting a really good total and get a lead. I think a lead is pivotal and crucial.”
Holder, who is eyeing a contribution with the bat, said, “I have done a good job in the first innings so far but my Test match is far from over. I still got a massive contribution to make with the bat and that is where my focus is going to be channelled now for this first innings as well. I don’t get too caught up with it, still a long way to go. We got three long days of cricket left and we’ve got to stay on top of our game.”
Speaking more on his spell, Holder said, “I enjoyed today’s spell...more so because leading up to the Test match I may have not gotten the overs I wanted to get under my belt, but maybe that helped to be fresh as well too. I enjoyed the surface, I enjoyed the conditions. I had not gotten a five-wicket haul out here on the last trip (2017).”
The Windies captain said he always wanted to get a five-wicket haul against England in England, so he has ticked that box already. He said he is now eyeing a hundred on English soil.
Roach was not among the wickets, but made scoring difficult for the opposing batsmen as he only conceded 41 runs in 19 overs.
“Kemar’s role was pivotal. I always stress to the guys if you are not getting any wickets (and) things are not really happening in your favour you got a job to do still.”
Holder said his team has been guilty of having a poor period of play where they leak a lot of runs. The Windies skipper is confident that Roach would be among the wickets during the three-match Test series.