Bowlers have to limit opponents in World Cup: Sir Curtly

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If the West Indies are going to have any chance of advancing deep into the ICC World Cup, legendary fast bowler Sir Curtly Ambrose believes their pace and spin bowlers must focus more on being economical.

Sir Curtly, who took 225 wickets in 176 One Day Internationals (ODIs) at an economy rate of 3.48, said from all reports the World Cup was expected to be high scoring.

However, he explained that while most of the Windies’ pacers were attacking bowlers, it was necessary for them to contain the opposing batsmen and build pressure.

The World Cup will be held in England and will bowl off on May 30 and run until July 14.

“When you’re talking about ODI cricket, I know every bowler wants to see a couple of wickets in the wickets column but when you’re thinking ODI cricket, the first thing you should think about is containment.

“The more you contain batsmen, it builds pressure and when it builds pressure, the batsmen have to find a way to score so they tend to do things a little bit out of character and it gives you the bowler a chance to get wickets. I think that most of our bowlers are attacking bowlers and we need to be able to contain players – that’s the first thing West Indies have to do,” Sir Curtly said.

He said it was also important for spin bowlers to bowl tight and maintain that pressure when introduced into the attack.

“They need to come to the party. If they’re going to play, we’re going to need to them to bowl tight. We can’t have our spinners bowling 10 [overs] for 60 [runs] and 10 for 70.

“The wickets out there are a little helpful to batsmen so the fast bowlers won’t get too much out of the pitch, so that’s why containment is important. For the spinners, the pitches may turn a bit so we need our spinners to bowl economically,” Sir Curtly said.

He, however, admitted that he was concerned with the team’s death bowling. He said it was important for bowlers, especially the fast bowlers to have variation.

Sir Curtly said while high totals were expected, bowlers could not afford to be expensive in the dying overs.

“As a fast bowler and with the pitch not responding to fast bowling, it is crazy to run and try to bowl 90 miles per hour every delivery. That will never work. You need variation – a couple quick ones, some cutters, some slower deliveries if you have them – so variation will be the key as opposed to running in and trying to bowl 90 mph every delivery.

“I have a serious concern about our death bowling. If we don’t have guys who can bowl well in the death, we are going to struggle because if the first 40 overs or so we go for plenty runs, you know we’re going to go for a lot more in the death so I am very, very concerned about our death bowling,” he noted.