West Indies vs India, 3rd Test: Best pitch in the Caribbean here in St. Lucia, claims Jason Holder

The third Test starts on Tuesday here at the Darren Sammy Stadium.

PTI| Updated: Aug 09, 2016, 02:55 AM IST
West Indies vs India, 3rd Test: Best pitch in the Caribbean here in St. Lucia, claims Jason Holder

St Lucia: West Indies' skipper Jason Holder has said that their top-order will need to fire on the "best pitch in the Caribbean" in St Lucia and use it to good effect.

The third Test starts on Tuesday here at the Darren Sammy Stadium.

"If I look back at the first two Test matches, the difference is that the top order hasn't really been getting in," said Holder on Monday.

"I think they need to work a little harder in get in. Once they get in, the likes of Darren Bravo, Kraigg Brathwaite and Marlon Samuels, we all know what they can do once they get a start. It's just about just getting a start, and get themselves going and carry it on from there."

"If you look at the pitch here, there seems to be a little bit of grass. There's a strong possibility that we may have a change in terms of our bowling department, we may think about the extra seamer. That's pretty much it. This wicket here, over the years, has played quicker than most pitches in the Caribbean.

"For me, I think it's the best cricket pitch in the Caribbean in terms of carry and assistance for the quicker bowlers. So, there's a strong possibility that you may see an extra seamer," he added.

The hosts had brought in Shai Hope as replacement for the misfiring Rajendra Chandrika, but he will still have to wait his chance to make a comeback to the playing eleven. They might bring in an additional seamer to the playing eleven though.

"To nip it in the bud, Leon Johnson will open the batting tomorrow. He's the next opener in the line, so he will come into the squad to replace Chandrika. I wish him the very best, hopefully he'll get some runs," said the skipper.

"We're not quite sure yet. We're still trying to weigh up a few things in terms of our thinking. I think we will have a better understanding tomorrow morning when we see the pitch," he added, whilst talking about whether to pick a third seamer or an all-round option.

"Currently, I am playing as a bowling all-rounder, I think my first priority is to bowl. I was very pleased with the way I bowled in the last Test, particularly. I didn't think I got enough wickets, and the wickets column wasn't as fruitful as I wanted it to be.

"Having said that, the beauty about my spell, for me, was remaining patient. I think on an other day, you may get two or three more wickets," he said, about his spell to Ajinkya Rahane in Jamaica.

At the same time, the skipper has professed a measured approach from his top-order, which has been struggling the Indian attack and has given away early wickets in every innings thus far in the series.

"I think it's important for each batsman to play their game. Whether you are a stroke player or someone who's a lot more patient, you have to work out what your game plan is, what's best suited for you.

"I think if you look at our middle order, it's a bit more free spirited in terms of stroke play and our top order is little bit more conservative, especially at the beginning. But as they spend some time, they tend to flourish," he signed off.