New Zealand V West Indies – 3rd Test Betting

The 3rd Test between New Zealand and West Indies in Hamilton seems finely balanced at the end of Day 2, with West Indies batting first and somehow making it to 367, and the hosts on 156/3 in reply.

In the cricket betting, New Zealand are still the favourites at 2.26 on Betfair, the Draw is 3.15 and West Indies are 4.1.

The match situation sees the hosts 211 runs behind, they are struggling to play the two front line West Indies spinners (yes they picked two), and the hosts also – all going to plan – will be batting fourth on an already turning wicket.

I don’t see New Zealand as such heavy favourites, for me the West Indies are currently the team in control, but the odds don’t seem to reflect this.

This could be because of the manner of the defeat inflicted on West Indies in the 2nd Test, but even allowing for the momentum and confidence New Zealand have, this is a totally different looking wicket.

Day 2 has seen Sunil Narine bowling 22 uninterrupted Overs with figures of 22-9-43-2. I doubt very much the wicket is going to turn less as the match continues, and as I already mentioned, West Indies have two front line spinners in their side.

I kind of get the impression that once Ross Taylor goes, the spinners could reap havoc with the rest of the New Zealand batting order.

The positives for New Zealand are that the in-form Ross Taylor is still there on 56, and can anybody ever rely on West Indies to finish a job off from a position of strength?

They managed to find themselves on 86/5 in their first innings, so to come back as well as they did on Day 1 is an achievement in itself already for West Indies.

That man Shivnarine Chanderpaul again blanking out the carnage around him and scoring his 29th Test century, with no shortage of help from wicketkeeper, Denesh Ramdin, who also helped himself to a century.

Did those two have the best batting conditions late on Day 1? Possibly.

Given all this, and even allowing for West Indies’ penchant for a batting collapse, I believe it would still take a brave man to back to the Kiwis from here.

Shivnarine Chanderpaul

It’s being reported on Cricinfo that Shivnarine Chanderpaul is set for a recall to the West Indies test side.

How the hell can this be the case after what we have witnessed over the past 2-3 weeks? How can all this bad feeling be put aside to enable him to play test cricket?

He has said himself that he hasn’t been able to fully concentrate on his batting due to messages being sent out to him while out in the middle, trying to tell him what to do, which sounds to me like a direct swipe at Otis Gibson.

How can all this lead to a healthy working relationship between coach and senior batsman?

He has not only fell out with the coach, but also the board – again in public, this time falling out with WICB chief Ernest Hilaire, who questioned certain aspects of West Indies cricket over the last 15 years, Hilaire said

“If you look at West Indies cricket since the mid-90s, a lot of the systems we had in place broke down. There’s no discipline, there’s no application. We’ve been doing that for 15 years and we’ve been losing. We need to put a new system in place. No one man is bigger than the team, no one man is such a superstar he can decide if he is training today, if he’s going to have treatment tomorrow, if he’s going to attend a team meeting. It cannot work that way.”

It’s not hard to see why Chanderpaul took offence to these remarks given he is the only man who has been there over the last 15 years.

If this is true and Chanderpaul is all these things described by Hilaire, then why are they considering picking him again?

I’m not blaming Chanderpaul for all this, although (like Chris Gayle) he has played his part. The board are a joke in my opinion, doing all their dirty washing in public via the media isn’t the way to do things properly.

If all this was designed by WICB to give Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Chanderpaul a kick up the backside, then it has failed miserably.

If these players are that disruptive and responsible for all this trouble then why don’t WICB just bite the bullet and drop them for good? Or is it WICB that are at fault?

They don’t apear to have handled the whole issue very well, but then again, when have they handled an issue well? I’ve spent a couple of hours thinking about it prior to writing this, and I can’t think of one.

Past West Indian greats such as Sir Viv Richards and Michael Holding must be cringing with what is going on, their sport seems to be getting ripped to pieces by those supposed to be it’s protectors.

Maybe it is time to clear the lot of them out, WICB and certain players, once and for all.