Pakistan all out for 105 (0:17)
West Indies intend to continue their aggressive bowling tactics after Andre Russell’s early short-ball barrage sparked a Pakistan collapse at Trent Bridge.
Russell’s three-over spell proved crucial, his brutal bouncers claiming the wickets of Fakhar Zaman and Haris Sohail and exposing Pakistan’s middle order early. It was clearly a pre-meditated plan and one that Jason Holder suggests will be repeated throughout the World Cup.
“I think our style was just to be aggressive,” Holder said after the match. “We just want to be aggressive with whoever we’re playing against. It’s just something that we need to do in order to pick up wickets.
“I think with the modern-day game, if you are not picking wickets up throughout the innings you’re going to struggle to contain teams. So, we just want to be aggressive even if we give up a few runs up front, trying to get wickets. One of the things we’ve spoken about in the recent past is just trying to have that mindset to take wickets because if you’re not taking wickets you’re going to struggle.”
Such was the force of the West Indies pacemen that they scythed through Pakistan’s line-up in just 21.4 overs. Sheldon Cottrell performed his wicket-taking salute after a leg-side strangle of Imam-ul-haq, Holder picked up three wickets, and Oshane Thomas picked up 4 for 27 in a memorable World Cup debut.
“Yeah, he’s been excellent,” Holder said. “The last game he got five wickets and then he comes and follows it up with four wickets here today. It was great to see him running in and bowling fast. That’s one thing we ask of him, just to be aggressive in those middle overs, as I said before. He’s working out quite nicely for us. It’s just a matter for us to be consistent with it, and at times not get carried away with it in terms of overdoing it.
“But yeah, credit to him. He’s been outstanding so far, and he’s definitely created a buzz throughout the entire team.”
Thomas, though, credited Russell with creating that buzz around the bowlers at Trent Bridge, encouraging the debutant to keep up the short-pitched attack.
“Andre Russell led the way, bowling aggressive and fast,” Thomas said. “The Pakistani guys didn’t like it. So I just picked up where he left off really – [the rules allow] two short balls every over, so use them.”
“The guys were sitting back. Russell was bowling short so I think the short ball – we had a good plan and executed well. It’s a good move going forward for us.”
West Indies’ next opposition – Australia on June 6 – will likely provide a different challenge, their batsmen more accustomed to fast, short-pitched bowling. But Holder will take encouragement from the all-round discipline displayed by his attack.
“Yeah, I was pleased with the discipline,” Holder said. “Outside the aggression, we need to be following up on our deliveries and building overs quite nicely. One of the things we always harp on about in the dressing room is what are we bowling outside of the aggressive balls, whether it be a short bowl or if you’re going up there for a yorker or whatever it may be, you’ve got to follow up with some other deliveries. It’s just about stacking overs nicely together and building some pressure.”
Source: ESPN Crickinfo