“Roach has been a great servant of West Indies cricket”: Sir Curtly Ambrose believes that Roach will get to 300 Test wickets

West Indian great Curtly Ambrose and Ian Bishop spent a large part of day three at the commentary box during the two-match series opener against Bangladesh at Antigua regretting that Kemar Roach deserved much more respect than what he gets.

West Indies fast bowler Kemar Roach anticipates continuing at international cricket for a few years yet and as such he’s targeting the 300-wickets.

He credited “blood sweat and tears” for the achievement of equalling the legendary Michael Holding on 249 wickets, during the opening Test against Bangladesh which finished on Sunday.

The 33-year-old, who was adjudged Man-of-the-Match for his seven-wicket haul in the contest at the Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium, said he anticipated continuing at international level for a few years yet, giving him enough time to reach the cherished landmark.

Courtney Walsh (519), Sir Curtly Ambrose (405), Malcolm Marshall (376) and Lance Gibbs (309) are the only West Indies bowlers to have passed 300 wickets.

Roach overtook the peerless Sir Gary Sobers (235) during the England series last March and now lies joint sixth on the all-time West Indies list next to Holding.

His next target before the 300 club will be Joel Garner who is fifth on the all-time list with 259 wickets.

Roach is the only active West Indies player with more than 200 Test wickets, the next best being Shannon Gabriel with 161.

On last Saturday’s third day of the opening Test, Roach picked up his 10th five-wicket haul in Tests and now averages 26 from a 72-match career.

Many people congratulated him on his milestone and Former West Indies Legendary fast bowler Sir Curtly Ambrose also praise Kemar Roach as a “a great servant” of the game.

“Kemar Roach has been a great servant of West Indies cricket for a number of years and I remember when he came onto the scene first, bowling with extreme pace. We all can remember that tour of Australia when he had the great Ricky Ponting hopping and skipping and not too many bowlers do that to the great Ricky Ponting.”

“He got an injury that curtailed his pace, but he came back even though he has lost some of his pace, but he was still very clever in seaming the ball around, so Kemar Roach is somebody that I am really happy for. I have a lot of time for him; he is a very respectful person, a hard worker and he listens to what you have to say,” he said.

Sir Curtly believes that Roach has what it takes to achieve his goal of 300 Test wickets.

“He is only one wicket away from 250, which would get him past the great Michael Holding and I am hoping he could stay long enough to at least get to 300 wickets. He would have deserved it for his hard work over the years and his dedication to West Indies cricket,” he said.

Roach has taken 127 wickets at an average of 23 from 35 Tests over the last 5 ½ years, leaving him among the elite in the world.

However, during that period West Indies have also struggled, winning only 15 of 44 matches, to remain in the bottom half of the International Cricket Council rankings.

Roach said a laser-like focus on his role had kept his motivation high during what had been a difficult period for the Caribbean side.

“You have to focus on your role that’s me,” Roach explained.

“Obviously I would’ve loved to have won more games but my role is to be the leading bowler, obviously go out there and show fight and put the team in a position to win.

“That’s what I focus on: I just go out there, perform for the team, do whatever the skipper asks, do whatever the team ask, and keep coming” said Roach

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