West Indies in England: A Cricket Analyst’s Views

West Indies in England 2020. Joe Root and Jason Holder talk.
Joe Root (L) of England and Jason Holder (R) of West Indies talk at the end of day 4 of the 3rd and final Test between West Indies and England at Darren Sammy Cricket Ground, Gros Islet, Saint Lucia, on February 12, 2019. (Photo by Randy Brooks / AFP) (Photo credit should read RANDY BROOKS/AFP via Getty Images)

West Indies in England

It’s official! West Indies in England. Finally. Cricket is set to resume.

In the larger scheme of things, resumption of sport may not be top priority for officials around the globe tackling the Coronavirus pandemic and trying their level best to stop the surge in COVID-19 cases.

But after a point, normal life should resume to a reasonable extent and by adhering to all the health advisory measures football has resumed across Europe and the UK and in a weeks time, Cricket would resume in England.

On July 8th, 2020, England take on West Indies in a three-match Test series which will be followed by a series against Pakistan.

West Indies in England 2020. Players pose with their new jumpers.
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – JUNE 28: West Indies fast bowlers Alzarri Joseph, Kemar Roach, Jason Holder and Shannon Gabriel pose for a portrait at Emirates Old Trafford on June 28, 2020 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Life, as it was pre-COVID 19 days, may never be the same, but for a Cricket fanatic and someone who has been analyzing and writing about this beautiful game for over two years now, the very fact that in such turbulent times we will get to see Test cricket.

Of course, there is going to be a lot of changes- muted celebrations, no high-fives etc and the biggest change would be to get used to empty stands.

But purely from the joy, it brings to watch a live game of cricket, I personally don’t mind the lack of fans in the stadium. It is a small mental adjustment which we must make and soon enough fans would get used to it.

Also, Read – England vs West Indies Combined XI

 

Joe Root set to miss the first Test: West Indies in England

West Indies in England. Can Windies win without Joe Root in 2020?
GROS ISLET, ST. LUCIA – FEBRUARY 11 : Joe Root of England hits out watched by Shane Dowrich of the West Indies during the third day of the third test match between the West Indies and England at the Darren Sammy Stadium on February 11, 2019 in Gros Islet, St. Lucia. (Photo by Popperfoto via Getty Images)

It is highly likely that Joe Root will not feature in the first test match owing to an injury. Ben Stokes, the star England all-rounder will become the team’s skipper for the first Test against Windies.

Read More – Ben Stokes to Captain England against West Indies

From a cricket analyst’s perspective, there are lots of things to look forward to.

I look forward to seeing if the Windies can repeat their magic of Headingley again this time around. It could be difficult given the long break from the game but West Indies did beat England 2-1 at home in 2019.

There is a lot of hope and enthusiasm from a large section of audiences especially on Social Media who is a direct product of IPL and the popularity of the game post that.

Indian Premier League fanatics usually despise test cricket. However, even they are excited this time around! Test cricket is definitely better than no cricket!

I may be too optimistic but I hope that the long break without any cricket would make fans appreciate the longest form of the game and give it more love and respect. The analyst and fan in me always want test match cricket to be more popular than it currently is.

So the concept of an ICC World Test Championship is nice as it brings an IPL like structure to every Test series played.

Player battles will be crucial. Kraigg Brathwaite and Shai Hope both had a tremendous 2017 tour to England. It will be interesting to watch how they match against the likes of Jofra Archer and Stuart Broad.

Jason Holder and Shannon Gabriel versus England’s top order is also likely to be a treat to watch.

 

Cricket and Test Cricket returns post the unprecedented break owing to COVID-19

LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 07: Ben Stokes of England shows the ball to spectators after taking six wickets for 22 runs during day one of the 1st Investec Test match between England and West Indies at Lord’s Cricket Ground on September 7, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Sarah Ansell/Getty Images).

Will the pitches have something for everybody? England be in some strife if they provide green tops. The Windies have the likes of Kemar Roach, Jason Holder, Shanon Gabriel, Alzari Joseph. All are seriously good bowlers who could expose a fragile England top-order in the absence of Joe Root.

It is certainly a momentous occasion for every cricket fan and from an analyst’s point of view. Cricket is returning on our screens and things are about to improve!

We are hoping for a close test series. In such a series, there could be top bowling spells and batting spells. These all add to the drama and excitement.

The drama surrounding an upcoming series is generally very high. Social media often gives it such a dimension. This series could be historical in more ways than one. This is because it will be the first cricket series to be played post sport was stopped owing to COVID-19.

 

 

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