'A side will lose WC final even after scoring 400-plus'
That is when, according to West Indies's fast bowling legend Sir Andy Roberts, the administrators will wake up and realise how one-day international cricket is heavily loaded in favour of batsmen
To say that Sir Andy Roberts is displeased to see bat dominating ball in the build-up to the ICC World Cup is an understatement. The West Indies fast bowling great, who has been part of four World Cups (three as a player and one as coach of the West Indies in 1996), is disgusted to see cricket turn into a, "batsman's game more than ever before."
Roberts couldn't help following the England v Pakistan one-day internationals where Game 2 and 3 witnessed 700-plus runs. Six hundred and eighty one runs were amassed in Friday's match at Trent Bridge where England won by three wickets.
Sir Andy Roberts
The West Indies-Bangladesh-Ireland tri-series also witnessed some run-heavy games. "Nobody seems to be doing anything about it. It's the batsmen all the way. If a bowler strays down leg side, a wide is called. There has to be some leniency and there has to be a rule change," said Roberts, who was part of the World Cup-winning West Indies squad in 1975 and 1979. He also opened the bowling in the 1983 World Cup final against India at Lord's where Clive Lloyd's men were stunned by Kapil Dev & Co. He returned impressive figures of 10-3-32-3.
"There is no attempt made to make one-day cricket a good contest between bat and ball. It's not good and you know when they [administrators] will realise that they better do something about it? When the side batting first scores 400-plus and will still lose the World Cup final," roared Roberts.
The Antiguan agreed that it is an open World Cup, but didn't sound confident of the West Indies putting on an impressive show: "No, I don't think they will do well. They have no bowling and their batting is weak."
With regards to India's prospects, Roberts remarked: "India's chances are as good as anybody else. They will do fine if the weather is good and the pitches are flat, but I feel they will have problems when the ball starts to swing."
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