Phil Simmons pushing for mindset change after ‘reckless’ batting

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Phil Simmons during West Indies training at Kensington Oval on Tuesday, April 28, 2015. (Credit: WICB Media/Randy Brooks of Brooks Latouche Photography)

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Thursday April 30, 2015, CMC – New head coach of the West Indies cricket team Phil Simmons says he was startled by his side’s batting display against England on the morning of the final day of the second test match in Grenada.

Resuming the final day on 202 for two – a lead of 37 runs overall – West Indies lost their last eight wickets for 105 runs, to be all out for 307, 35 minutes after lunch.

West Indies surrendered a strong position which allowed England to win the test by nine wickets and lead the series one nil.

“You hear people talk about how bad this is, or how bad that is. But when you’re in the camp, it’s not all as bad as people say,” said Simmons.

“But there has been nothing as startling as the way we batted on the last morning in Grenada. There is learning to be done.”

The regional side lost six wickets for 84 runs in the first session on the final day as James Anderson tore through the middle order with the new ball.

Simmons, a former West Indies all-rounder, described the batting as ‘reckless’, and said the match was lost because of ‘negligence’.

“We had two hours of negligence on the last day in Grenada and we lost the game,” Simmons told ESPN cricinfo.

“It was a reckless period. It just needed a couple of guys to bat for another half-hour or so and we would have saved the game”.

The new Windies head coach says he was encouraged by some aspects of his side during the first two test matches but has appealed for more consistency.

He is advocating for a change in the mindset of the players which he said should be informed by the state of the game.

“I’d like to see us play two or three sessions consistently. We’ve played well in one, been bad in the next, and then come back in the one after that. But we’ve not played consistently well for three sessions,” Simmons explained.

“We just need our young players to understand that how they play must be determined by what the teams needs and what the scoreboard reads. So they have to learn here that, if the score is 40 for 4, you might have to bat for two sessions and come back the next day to get your big score. The mindset has to change”.

The third and final test between West Indies and England starts on Friday in Barbados.

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