Phil Simmons wants West Indies’ ODI top order to keep pushing themselves


The coach is eager for hundreds to become bigger so the team is able to post 300-plus scores frequently

Coach Phil Simmons is targeting another uplift in West Indies’ ODI batting returns when they face Australia in a three-match series in Barbados this week.

They put in three consistent displays batting second to beat Sri Lanka 3-0 earlier this year – which followed their 3-0 drubbing in Bangladesh during January – but Simmons is eager for the batting order to show they can kick on beyond 300.

That wasn’t required against Sri Lanka as, by batting second, they knew what was needed each time and paced their chases, winning with three overs, two balls and nine balls remaining respectively in the three matches.
There were top-order hundreds in each of those matches – from Shai Hope, Evin Lewis and Darren Bravo – which was further encouragement for Simmons but he knows there will be a need to post 300-plus totals on occasions and wants those at the top of the order to push on further.

“We are looking for the way we batted to continue and improvements have to be made in the middle overs from 20-39 in order for us to get from 280-290 to the 320-330 we’ll need against Australia,” Simmons said. “We’ve been discussing that since the Sri Lanka series so now it’s time to put it into action.”

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