Cape Town - West Indies captain Jason Holder said they had let
themselves down with "inconsistent" bowling after they lost the
opening ODI of the five-match series by seven wickets to England at Old
Trafford on Tuesday.
Though defending only 204 in a contest reduced to 42 overs
per side, Holder lamented his side's lack of enterprise with the ball as the
hosts raced to their target in the 31st over courtesy of Jonny Bairstow's
maiden ODI hundred.
Holder said after the game: "We lost wickets at crucial
stages. Every time we tried to rebuild we lost a wicket and that doesn’t help
"Having said that, with runs on the board, I still felt
we could have given a better account of ourselves with the ball. We let
ourselves down [by being] just too inconsistent and allowing them to score a
bit too freely."
He added: "We didn't bowl as well as I thought we
should. We were really inconsistent with our lines and lengths and we leaked
The Caribbean side received a robust start from Chris Gayle
as the left-hander blasted two fours and three sixes in a 27-ball 35, adding 45
off 33 balls for the first wicket with Evin Lewis (11).
Once the pair departed in the space of 20 balls to leave the
visitors on 53 for two in the ninth over, however, the innings wandered as Shai
Hope (35) and Marlon Samuels (17) posted 50 for the third wicket but off 87
They fell in close proximity of each other - 12 balls apart
with four runs added - and the pressure told on the middle and lower order,
leaving the Windies on an inadequate 203 for nine.
Holder acknowledged that a lack of rotation of strike was to
blame for the slow-down in momentum.
"If we're not getting boundaries we need to rotate the
strike and it showed today. In the middle we got a little stuck so it's an area
we need to improve on in terms of rotating the strike," Holder stressed.
"It's been an area of concern for a long time for us.
We're naturally a boundary-hitting team but if the boundaries aren't coming we
need to find another option."
The defeat meant West Indies will now have to resort to
contesting a 10-team qualifier next year in order to reach the 2019 World Cup
They can now only finish ninth in the ICC ODI rankings by
the September 30 cut-off date, outside the top-right ranking required for
But Holder said their immediate focus was completing the on-going
series and playing competitively.
"There's definitely work to be done [in the future] but
we've just got to focus on this series first. We've got to pick ourselves up
and head back to Trent Bridge in two days’ time [for the second ODI]."