WI vs BAN: “Stats definitely keep me going: – Kemar Roach five-fer puts West Indies on the first Test victory

Kemar Roach has as many Test wickets (249) as Michael Holding and now the pacer wants to go for 300. The 33-year-old bagged a five-wicket haul in Bangladesh’s second innings to equal the record of West Indies legendary pacer Michael Holding. It was Roach’s tenth five-wicket haul in the Test cricket.

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.

”He should get 300 Test wickets,” exclaimed Ambrose on quite a few occasions while Bishop echoed the same sentiment watching the right-arm fast bowler writing his name in the history book by claiming 249 Test wickets and equaling none other than West Indian legendary pace man Michael Holding.

”Proud man (to equal Michael Holding),” Roach, who picked his 10th five-for in the game said after the end of play.

”Obviously he is one of the legends of the game and to equal him just goes to show I am pretty much up there. It’s a good feeling and obviously you wanna keep going as much you can and I got some more wickets in me I definitely have,” he said

”Stats man, stats (keep me going) and money too but stats definitely keep me going and I love to be amongst the great. Put my name up there and obviously in history and so therefore that what I am going for,” he said adding that 300 wickets is something that he wants to achieve in next two to three years.

”300 wickets is something that I will try to get in two-three years,” he said.

Roach had his share of ups and down and according to the pundits sitting on the commentary box he had compromised on many things that include his pace after his injury in 2017. Roach still managed to survive as he was keen on developing other skills to compete in modern day cricket.

Roach admitted that he had to compromise his pace since the injury in 2017 but added that it was during that point of time he also developed the skill of bowling from round the wicket to the left-handers.

”I lost my pace because of my injury( in 2017) and I was in for skill with lot of hard work and lot of consistent bowling obviously want to get where you want to be in your career. It’s actually good to see the result,” he said adding that it was in England when he first tried out going round the wicket.

” That( going round the wicket) turned out to be in England in 2017 and I had a discussion in the nets and want to go around the wicket in the nets to change the angle and I get that shape on the ball and it worked since that and I got a lot of wicket from that and become better with that I am pretty happy with it,” he said.

Roach, who was cleared at the last minute to play this Test, was a man on a mission against Bangladesh on he has now taken 50 Test wickets at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.

”Well for me it is an open ground and you always get that sideways movement. There is a strong breeze and it just works for me,” he said.

”I had some good success as I said in Antigua. There is a lot of movement and the open field that we have and I am happy. I like being in Antigua and people are nice and hopefully, the prime minister can give me a passport,” he said.

Roach added that he was determined to bowl straighter as he felt that was the best way to go forward against the tourist in the second innings while adding that they had to be patient when things were not going their way.

The tourists lost four wickets in the opening session and an innings defeat was very much on the cards before Shakib al Hasan and Nurul Hasan helped them to earn a lead by coming up with a fighting century partnership and battled it out by batting the entire middle session.

However, Roach had other plans after getting the new ball and he removed both the set batsman to make sure the hosts are back in a commanding position though both had to be blamed for throwing away their wicket.

The Windies spearhead clean bowled Ebadat Hossain to pick his tenth five-for in Tests as Bangladesh were bowled out for 245.

”I had a conversation with Roddy [Estwick] the bowling coach and that let me go straight as it will be easier,” he said adding that he urged the boys not to surrender when things were not going their way.

”It was just about keeping up the body language and keep creating chances because there will be time when you are punished. Coming up after lunch the ball was soft and we tried to be as much patient as we can because we always knew that once we get the new ball something gonna happen,” he said adding that he enjoys leading the pace unit.

”It’s a great feeling and fantastic unit and the guys are obviously learning and they work hard and they ask questions and they are committed. I love being around with the guys and hopefully play as long as I can,” he said.

Shakib Al Hasan (63) and Nurul Hasan (64) put on a brilliant 123 runs for the seventh wicket to give the visiting side a glimmer of hope, before ROach removed both the batters with the second new ball.

Bangladesh were all out for 245 runs, and left West Indies with only 84 to win with more than two days left.

Bangladesh medium-pacer Khaled Ahmed took three wickets in 11 balls and reduced West Indies to 9 for 3 in the fourth over of the chase.

Opener John Campbell (28 not out) and Jermaine Blackwood (17 not out)eased the tension by holding out to stumps and leading West Indies to 49 for 3.

The West indies need a 35 runs to win on Sunday morning in the series opener.

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