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Wi win commendable but they will still need to improve
In spite of their large first innings total, the West Indies’ batting will need to improve. Shane Dowrich rightly won the 'Man of the Match' award for his unbeaten 125 in the first innings which catapulted his side to a large first innings score. Still, too many West Indies batsmen fell for fairly low scores after getting starts, and it required big partnerships between Dowrich and tailenders Bishoo and Roach to reach their total. Additionally, the Sri Lankans were rather poor in the field, dropping too many catches, one off Dowrich was extremely costly in particular.
Preferred by the selectors when many Caribbean voices were calling for Denesh Ramdin, Dowrich showed lots of patience and no little skill during his 325-ball innings. He never lost sight of the team’s needs, and even after completing a century — the fourth slowest in West Indies cricket history — he stuck to the task of carrying his side to a good position.
A few in the Caribbean were calling for the head of Kieran Powell as well, for he has largely failed to live up to his considerable potential. In the second innings, however, he made a fluent 88. Always upright, always elegant, his driving off the front foot stood out. He seemed to get bogged down as he got closer to his hundred, however, and eventually got out because of the restrictions he appears to have placed upon himself.
Devon Smith also has to be mentioned, but for totally inauspicious reasons. After languishing in the Test-match wilderness for three years, the opener was drafted back into the side on the back of a stunningly productive first-class season. Aged 36, this has to be his last chance to nail down a spot in the team, and yet one does not get the impression that he is willing to fight hard enough to hold on to his wicket, and therefore his place in the side.
Lackadaisical running saw him being run out in the first innings for seven. In the second, he was bowled off a Suranga Lakmal no-ball, his technique torn asunder. Rather than being properly grateful, however, he inexplicably essayed a horrendous drive to a very wide delivery and was bowled again next ball. No self-respecting batsman should get out like that.