West Indies white-ball captain Nicholas Pooran has no immediate plans to step down after his team’s disappointing T20 World Cup campaign.
Two-time champions West Indies were knocked out of T20 World Cup after losing to Ireland in their final Group B clash of the T20 World Cup last Friday.
Opt into Bat first, West Indies didn’t get their good start. Ireland drew first blood as Barry McCarthy foxed Kyle Mayers with his length ball, the left-hander completely mistiming the ball to mid-off.
Johnson Charles feasted on Curtis Campher’s short balls, taking two fours and a six on three consecutive deliveries in the fourth over.
But as soon as off-spinner Simi Singh took him out in his first over, as Charles sliced a short ball straight to the backward point.
But he didn’t find much support from the other end as Evin Lewis was rusty in his 18-ball stay and departed when he miscued a Delany googly to deep mid-off.
King continued to anchor the innings with back-to-back fours off McCarthy and get his sixth T20I fifty even as captain Nicholas Pooran fell while trying to clear the infield and Rovman Powell holed out to deep mid-wicket.
With King unable to get the desired acceleration, Odean Smith swung hard to hit four and two sixes in his 19 not out off 12 balls, but was unable to push West Indies past 150-mark.
The right-hander was aided by his captain Andrew Balbirnie, who played an uncharacteristic attacking inning of 37 off 23 balls to take Windies out of contention.
At the time the first wicket fell, Ireland had already amassed half the runs in 7.3 overs, and had enough time to chase the total down. Stirling and Lorcan Tucker combined and chased it down in 17.3 overs with 9 wickets remaining.
Pooran joined the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force squad yesterday and ready to lead again.
“Well look, I’m fine now,” he said of his frame of mind after the Windies crashed out of the World Cup following losses to ICC Associate Members Ireland and Scotland in the first stage of the tournament.
West Indies head coach Phil Simmons subsequently resigned his post on Saturday, a day after their nine-wicket loss to the Irish.
“The last couple of days, obviously I’ve been hurt but I am thankful that I have this opportunity to play this game again. As players, we go through a lot and that is obviously a learning experience for myself and the other players as well but I am happy that I have another opportunity to play this game and starting Monday, we have an opportunity to play against CCC (Combine Campuses and Colleges) and that is where my focus is at the moment,” Pooran told the media yesterday.
Pooran noted that Simmons had conveyed his intentions to the players while in Australia and hoped that past successes would not be overshadowed by recent setbacks.
“Obviously, he told us in Australia that was the plan for him. It is obviously tough for him. He has given it all to West Indies cricket, winning a World Cup for West Indies as well, so I hope that people don’t forget that as well. He made his decision and I wish him all the best in his future endeavors. It was really nice working with him as well but he made his decision,” said Pooran.
Of his own future, the pooran said: “Obviously, we don’t know what the future holds but we will take it day by day. Again, it was a learning experience for all of us and this is our journey and our story. Time will tell what will happen but for now it is just about focusing on ourselves and how we can get better as individuals,” he explained.
Pooran added that, “rest is the ultimate (way to heal) and every player needs that but inside it is still hurting as well.” He said however, that, “I want to use that hurt as motivation and obviously come back strong.”
He said further: “I have been thinking about the last couple of months…Playing cricket is my dream and obviously I have had my test in life as well and this is another test for me. I am a person that embraces challenges and this was just another one for me. It is not going to stop me. I am going to continue to learn from my experiences and again I am happy I can wake up in the morning and see that I have an opportunity to play cricket again.”