With West Indies emphatically defeating England in back-to-back Test matches to reclaim the coveted Wisden Trophy, cricket legend Sir Garfield Sobers is warning fans not to get carried away with their expectations of the regional side.
Noting that he was proud of the Jason Holder-led team, Sir Garfield suggested that while belief in one’s team was always a good thing, it was too early to begin thinking that the glory days of West Indies dominance had returned.
“Fans will be fans and they have their opinion. They would always want to see their team winning and win all the time. People like to always know that you are winning but as soon as you start losing they are on your case. You can’t win everything and likewise, people need to understand that one swallow does not make a summer,” said Sir Garfield in an interview with Barbados TODAY this morning.
Sir Garfield suggested that the recent victories should serve as a lesson to fans that cricket was a game where fortunes can change quite quickly and therefore one should not be overly critical of the young Caribbean side whenever they underperform.
“You cannot win every game and be always on top of the world. There are times that you are going to fall because every country in the world that plays cricket or any sport will go to the top and then fall to the bottom. That is the way the game goes, you win some and you lose some. You can’t always win and you can’t always be on top,” he said, noting that captain Jason Holder, who is now the ICC’s number one ranked all-rounder, had been performing consistently well since handed the leadership in 2015.
Two weekends ago, the West Indies team, ranked number eight in the world, defeated the number three-ranked England team within four days in the first test match in Barbados. The regional side demonstrated that their first performance was no fluke in Antigua last weekend, when they completed a 10-wicket victory over the English within three days, winning the Wisden trophy for the first time since 2009.
This is far cry from the recent back-to-back whitewashes, suffered first at the hands of the lower-ranked Bangladesh in Bangladesh, and against the number one-ranked India. With only sporadic glimpses of brilliance in recent years, many pundits had given West Indies a snowball’s chance in hell of being competitive, far less winning the series in such a comprehensive fashion.
With one game still to go in the English tour of the West Indies, the legendary all-rounder noted that regional side could capitalise on this momentum, provided that they continued to do the basics correctly.
“They really did well as everybody can see. All they have to do is to continue to work hard on the basics, practise hard and ensure that they understand clearly what the game is all about and who they are playing for. I have always believed that West Indies will get there when all is said and done. I believe the team knows what needs to be done,” the National Hero said.