Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 19th 2013 Contents A59
May 19, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
Especially in Test cricket, regardless of
how many runs a team makes, that team
simply needs bowlers who can get twenty
wickets if they are to win. That is not such
a requisite in T-20 s and ODI s!
If one is a genuine all-rounder, as new
West Indies ODI captain Dwayne Bravo is,
then responsibilities are greater; four or five
aspects to his game; batting, fielding, bowl-
ing; most importantly, thinking and lead-
Ideally, batting and bowling should be
equally prioritized, along with ubiquitous,
expected, excellent fielding, but few all-
rounders manage to have that perfect bal-
ance! It is really quite tough!
Add the captaincy element to that brew
and it becomes as arduous as differential
In Tests and especially ODI s, it is also
hard for all-rounder-captains to know that
special required balance of their own nec-
essary input. Most batsman-bowler captains
seldom get the bowling element right!
Being a genuine all-rounder always pres-
ents challenges as to which aspect should
be the main focus.
Sir Garfield Sobers was unique, brilliant
at any aspect of his game for West Indies,
except, in some minds, his captaincy. To
this day, I am sure that he never understood
that, as a cricketer, he still has no parallel!
Brian Lara was the first to highlight that
Dwayne Bravo is a better batsman than
most think, and is more a batting all-rounder
than bowling all-rounder. BL was also cor-
rect to suggest Dwayne as a good leader
Now that older Bravo has been handed
formal captaincy of West Indies ODI team,
starting with the final Champions Trophy
competition next month, I am sure that he
will cope very well with this added pres-
Bravo s fielding is always excellent, but
positive production from his bowling and
batting, especially in ODI s, have been much
too sporadic to be fully convincing, especially
for the talent that he obviously has.
In 137 ODI s, Bravo has only 2311 runs, at
a meagre average of 23.82. He also has 160
wickets at expensive 30.06 average and poor
economy rate of 5.32. These are quite under-
whelming figures, when isolated.
Overall, though, Bravo s productions at
creases, added to his ebullience and team
spirit, allow that he must always be included,
even for overall experiences. Now, this new
mantle has been passed to him!
Dwayne s bowling is easily good enough
for T-20 s. Four overs for "only" forty runs
is very acceptable. But, ten overs for sixty
runs is not acceptable in 50 over games.
That is the very fine difference in the two!
T-20 cricket suits Dwayne Bravo as per-
haps few others in world cricket; his Test
captain, Darren Sammy, also coming into
that good reckoning too.
Indeed, T-20 cricket is a God-send for
especially West Indies cricket in recent vin-
tage, our team s winning last ICC World T-
20 only confirming that this team is at its
best in that format!
Champions Trophy 2013 cricket is not
It runs 50 overs per team, each bowler
having no more than ten overs, not that
maximum of four, as in T-20 s. That makes
a massive difference to premier bowlers!
What should bowlers prefer in ODI s? 10
overs, no maidens, sixty runs, three wickets;
or; ten overs, three maidens, 35 runs, no
wickets? Getting wickets do stop runs, but
frugality is the name in 50 overs games!
There is a good reason that most great
'Bravo will do well as ODI captain'
captains have been either batsmen or wicket-keepers,
even both. Few outright bowlers have been great
captains. There has been some success for bowling
Ex-England captain, Alex Stewart, Australia s Adam
Gilchrist, India s present captain, Mahendra Singh
Dhoni, come to mind immediately as wicket-keep-
er-captains. Rodney Marsh, Mark Boucher, Deryck
Murray, Wasim Bari were others.
Wicket-keeper-batsmen-captains have the best
of all worlds! They see everything possible!
Most times, an outright bowling captain is a dan-
gerous thing, but West Indies have been fortunate
Courtney Walsh, with his Herculean efforts, has
been the only real "bowling captain" that West Indies
has had in history. We all know what "Cuddy" could
have produced at the bowling crease.
Most international bowlers worth their salt have
to believe that they are Atlas, but even Walsh suffered
from that feeling that he could do everything at once.
No bowler can deliver from both ends of the pitch
Pakistan has been more the flavor for bowling all-
rounder captains, starting with now politician Imran
Khan, then Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis.
They all did relatively well, but often over-bowled
themselves, believing that they, accepting responsi-
bilities, must do more than practical, to win games.
Cricket is still a team sport, probably more so
especially now, with even more T-20 s around too!
Luckily for Dwayne Bravo, the team he will captain
at Champions Trophy 2013 contains several players
who have already themselves been captains of West
Indies in the past.
Those experiences are invaluable, and mean that,
in the true sense of the word, players should them-
selves be captains of their own individual outputs,
while helping the team!
Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan, present Test cap-
tain Darren Sammy, even vice-captain Denesh
Ramdin, have had extensive leadership experiences.
With these lieutenants, Dwayne Bravo will do well.
COLIN EH CROFT
Dwayne Bravo recently replaced Darren Sammy.
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