London: With their backs against the wall, West Indies will take on in-form New Zealand in a must-win World Cup clash on Saturday.
The Windies have looked more in T20 mode this World Cup with their batsmen losing patience too early and getting out, barring Shai Hope who has looked solid. The Jason Holder-led side started their campaign on a high, thrashing Pakistan by seven wickets.
But since then, the Caribbean side have been on a downward slide losing three games — against Australia, England and Bangladesh — with the game against South Africa being washed out.
A defeat against New Zealand, who are the only team besides India to have remained unbeaten so far, would all but end their hopes for a semi-final berth.
The West Indies have paid the price for their one-dimensional tactics of trying to bounce out oppositions, Caribbean great Clive Lloyd said.
“I was disappointed with the West Indies performance against Bangladesh,” Lloyd, who captained West Indies to World Cup triumphs in 1975 and 1979, told the ICC. “It would appear that they only have one way to play with no variation to their game plan. They are trying to blast people out and I don’t think they understand the English conditions. You cannot always do that here because the pitches during this competition have been batsman-friendly despite the rain. It might be green but it doesn’t always fly around. Bangladesh were ready for that sort of onslaught and to chase down 320 with eight overs to spare is a great effort, but it is poor cricket by the West Indies.”
Catch the Match
West Indies v New Zealand
Venue: Old Trafford
Start time: 4.30pm
Telecast: OSN Sports