The rain gods have started to make an entry into the World Cup 2019. Both the warm-up matches, South Africa-Windies and Pakistan-Bangladesh ended up being washed out on Sunday. The game between Pakistan and Bangladesh saw just rain interruptions and some more before eventually being called-off, however, from that point of view, the other game between South Africa and the Windies, taking place in Bristol, had witnessed some bit of action.
After winning the toss, Windies skipper Jason Holder elected to bowl first. The two South African openers, Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla were the ones who got to bat before the match got washed away. Amla and de Kock batted extremely well to stitch a fabulous unbeaten 95-run opening partnership in 12.4 overs. Amla continued from where he left against Sri Lanka, scoring another impressive half-century (51* off 46), while de Kock remained unbeaten at 37 not out.
The two batsmen played really well
During the post-match press conference, Windies skipper Jason Holder talked about his team's bowling in the brief action and also on the atmosphere in the camp. Holder revealed that he and the other bowlers were bowling a little bit too short and did not vary the lengths. He noted that they gave a bit of width at times to both Amla and de Kock.
Holder mentioned that since these conditions are not offering much for the bowlers, it gets very important to stay accurate and create the pressure by stacking up some dot deliveries.
"The two batsmen played really well and the wicket played well. We have to make some slight adjustments in terms of our length as we were probably a little bit too short. We offered a bit of width at times as well, so in these conditions where the ball doesn't do as much, I just think we need to be as accurate as we possibly can in terms of line and length.
Then we can try and create some problems there and I think if we can stack up some dot balls and stack up some pressure overs together, more often than not you get the wickets you want,” quoted Jason Holder.
The Windies team hasn't had a consisted run in the 50-overs format in the recent times. However, some of their players are coming fresh from a great IPL season especially the explosive duo of Andre Russell and Chris Gayle. They also have some young batters, Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer and Evin Lewis, who can do the damage with the bat.
"Andre Russell is one of those guys who is really impactful, he's an impact player and he's a match-winner, so we expect guys like him to play a big role in our World Cup campaign,” said Holder.
"Chris is definitely up for it and we're just trying to manage him over these two games, giving everyone a chance to get a hit out and a bowl. It's one of these things where we just try to keep everyone as fresh as possible. Chris is one of the guys who carries a bit of age and he's a senior guy within the squad,” he added.
Windies recently finished as the runners-up in the tri-series in Ireland. The Jason Holder-led team will now take on New Zealand in the next warm-up fixture on May 28 and they would surely want to do well there in order to prepare in the best of manners for the main event.
"Obviously it's a situation where we need to hope we get some cricket in the next two days against New Zealand. I'm definitely not [worried about being underprepared]. We just came from Ireland and playing the Tri-Nations Series there, so we've had a lot of cricket leading up to this. Guys have been playing IPL cricket and everyone was playing cricket leading up to this tournament, so I think we're all well attuned to the conditions," Holder concluded.