HAMILTON, New Zealand (CMC) – Assistant coach Roddy Estwick believes Kraigg Brathwaite will acquit himself well, when he takes over as West Indies captain for the second Test against the Black Caps starting here tomorrow.
The 25-year-old, the side’s vice-captain for over a year, was forced into the breach after regular skipper Jason Holder was suspended by the International Cricket Council for the upcoming match, following an over-rate offence in the just-concluded Wellington Test.
Estwick, who has overseen Brathwaite’s development from a young age, said his fellow Barbadian possessed all the qualities necessary for leadership.
“Leadership is not anything new to Kraigg. Obviously I’ve known him from a little boy at Combermere (secondary school) and he’s captained right through school at Combermere,” Estwick said.
“He was Barbados Under-15, Under-17, Under-19 (captain) and West Indies Under-19 captain to the World Cup; so it’s nothing new to him. It’s something I would say he’s been groomed for.
“It’s unfortunate the way he’s got the captaincy for this match but we’ve got to put that behind us. We’ve got to support him, we’ve got to help him, we’ve got to rally around him and we’ve got to go out and play good positive cricket.”
Brathwaite was one of the few bright spots from the opening Test at the Basin Reserve last weekend which the Windies lost by an innings and 67 runs inside four days.
The right-hander scored 24 and 91 in a match that featured a massive West Indies batting collapse, emerging as one of just two batsmen who managed half-centuries.
Estwick pointed out that the high value Brathwaite placed on his wicket and the high standards he demanded from those around him would be an asset for the side.
“He will lead by example. He’s someone who will put a price on his wicket. He’s a person who will give 100 per cent at all times and he will expect his players to do that as well,” Estwick explained.
“He will expect his players not to give an inch, not to let their heads drop and continue to work hard and stay disciplined, and those are the things he’s going to bring to the table.”
West Indies have not won a Test series on New Zealand soil on 22 years and the defeat in Wellington ensured that trend would remain unchanged.
Estwick said he backed the Windies to hit back from the heavy loss, noting the key was to remain focused throughout the Test.
“It (first Test result) was very disappointing. We didn’t play well in that Test match at all. We didn’t bowl as well as we would’ve liked. We certainly didn’t bat as well as expected,” said Estwick.
“Obviously if you’re going to be bowled out on the first day of a Test match just before tea for 134, it’s always going to be an uphill struggle.
“What we’ve got to do now is put that behind us and over the next couple of days really work hard and bounce back. We’ve done it before and if we can remain focused and disciplined, and keep our belief as strong as possible, we can bounce back in his coming Test match.”