Gibson warns Windies will not relax
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – West Indies will not be easing up on Zimbabwe despite their relatively easy success in the preceding limited overs series, head coach Ottis Gibson has warned.
The regional side encountered little resistance as they blew away the Zimbabweans 2-0 in the Twenty20 series and also swept the three-match One-Day International series.
And with the first Test of the two-match series bowling off in a matter of days, Gibson said he expected his side to take fresh guard.
“The interesting thing is we play three different formats with some new players coming in, so hopefully those players will bring a new focus,” Gibson told a media conference on Sunday.
“The Test series is very important for us because we have won the last four matches we have played and if we can win these two, we would have go back to see the last time the West Indies have won six Test matches in a row.
“That is something we want to focus on and an achievement we would like to have after the Test series.”
The results of the limited overs series attracted criticism from pundits, however, with several complaining that the Windies were hardly tested, and that the matches lacked a serious competitive edge.
And with Zimbabwe starved of international action with just four Tests over the last two years, the Windies are expected to dominate again in the contests at Kensington Oval and Windsor Park in Dominica.
However, Gibson said it was crucial West Indies enjoy the good times like these, especially since they too knew what it was like to be dominated.
“We simply look back to Australia when we [there] in January and trying hard to win but couldn’t win because they were obviously superior. You have to take your tough moments like the Australia situation and then enjoy these situations,” Gibson pointed out.
“People will say that [beating Zimbabwe] is easy and if you get that mindset that it is easy, then you go and get rolled over and then the same people who are saying it should have been easy, are saying that you are not as good as you think you are.”
He continued: “For us as a team it’s to focus on the first session of the first Test match and take it from there step by and step and hope at the end of five days of hopefully good cricket, that we’ve won the Test match and that’s all we can do.
“If you look at how the rankings work, the top teams – the Englands, the Australias – it’s tough to win against them either home or away and it probably sometimes shows up the gulf between the top teams and the teams that are the bottom where we are.
“That’s why we are working so hard to try and get ourselves out of the position we are in at the moment.”