We all of us retain an affection for the Windies because they used to be great, and most of their players seem so damned cool. Sri Lanka has charmed the pants off the rest of us because of their apparent niceness.
In the First Test, the Lankans beat the West Indies by 121 runs. Centuries by Mahela Jayawardene and some bloke I’ve never heard of in the first innings secured a handsome 476 for the Lankans.
The West Indies gently succumbed in their first innings, avoiding a follow-on but still conceding a 194-run deficit.
From there, it was a classic cricket set up of dominant side pressing for a win against a gritty rearguard grinding for a draw. But, after some brave stands, the Windies finally lost their pluck.
There is something increasingly Bangladesh-like in the Windies’ loses. Here are there last 12 games:
Mar 22-26, 2008 – lost to Sri Lanka by 121 runs.
Jan 10-12, 200 – lost to South Africa by an innings and 100 runs.
Jan 2-5, 2008 – lost to South Africa by seven wickets.
Dec 26-29, 2007 – beat South Africa by 128 runs.
Jun 15-19, 2007 – lost to England by seven wickets.
Jun 7-11, 2007 – lost to England by 60 runs.
May 25-28, 2007 – lost to England by an innings and 283 runs.
May 17-21, 2007 – drew to England.
Nov 27-Dec 1, 2006 – lost to Pakistan by 199 runs.
Nov 19-23, 2006 – drew to Pakistan.
Nov 11-14, 2006 – lost to Pakistan by nine wickets.
Jun 30-Jul 2, 2006 – lost to India by 49 runs.
It is, of course, troubling that they have only won once from the last twelve (and their previous win was in 2005), but is most concerning for me is the margin.
The main criticism of Bangladesh’s cricket is that they are rolled over which such ease, to the point that some are demanding their withdrawal from test cricket. But, judging by the Windies’ record, they are just as suspect.