The series comprising three ODIs and two Tests is Bangladesh’s first international engagement in 10 months having hosted Zimbabwe in March last year and then go to a break due to the COvid-19 pandemic
Phil Simmons, the coach of the visiting West Indies team, thinks hosts Bangladesh are the clear favorites in the upcoming series against them. The comment is based on the fact that the Caribbean side is missing out some of their best performers from the series as the players cited Covid-19 and personal concerns to deny a tour to Bangladesh.
With an inexperienced line-up, West Indies head coach Simmons said that Bangladesh will have the upper hand when it comes to experience and for the fact that they are playing at home.
he series comprising three ODIs and two Tests is Bangladesh’s first international engagement in 10 months having hosted Zimbabwe in March last year and then go to a break due to the COvid-19 pandemic.
“Bangladesh are the clear favourites and we can’t argue with that. Sometimes experience plays the part and sometimes the enthusiasms and hunger plays good role to trump the experience. Hopefully we could do well,” said Simmons during a virtual press conference on Tuesday.
West Indies cricketers are amongst the most to have travelled around the world during the pandemic whether it is for international commitments or participating in franchise leagues. The side was the first to travel for resumption of international cricket to England in July last year amid the coronavirus threat and then tour New Zealand. In between, they had the players travel to the UAE for Indian Premier League and Australia for the Big Bash.
Simmons during the press conference was quarried if he thinks the decision by the top players of his team was wrong, he said, “I think all our players have been given their options since the first series in England. Some took their options in the first, some choose in the second series in New Zealand and some decided to skip the third here in Bangladesh. It is up to the individual and it is the players’ judgment to make their call.”
Sports keeping inside a bio-bubble are tough as it can affect the players’ mentally but Simmons is confident on his team to keep things right backed by the fact that the West Indies side are one of the most experienced when it comes to staying inside the bio-secure bubble and play.
“It is definitely not easy to be away from home for any of us. The two series we played everything was put into the series and the result might have come what we wanted. No series away is easy as I said before. We are going to give our best,” said the former Windies all-rounder.
“It’s important what you learn as you go along. We are one of the most experienced teams to be inside the bio-secure bubble and you know you have to stick to the bio-secure environment and keep the health safety intact and all about learning as you go along,” Simmons said.
West Indies team is currently in a three-day isolation in the team hotel having arrived to Dhaka on Sunday. The visitors have travelled to Bangladesh with Covid-19 negative reports and have received all negative reports in a Covid-19 test in Dhaka on Monday. The visitors will have their first net session at the Academy Ground at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on Thursday.
Following four net sessions, West Indies will play an inter-squad 50-over game at BKSP on January 18 and lock horns in the first of the three-match ODI series against Bangladesh on January 20.
The last time West Indies toured Bangladesh, in 2019, had lost both the ODI and Test series despite having a full strength side.