Captain Kieron Pollard has slammed West Indies’ performance in Wednesday’s second One-Day International as “pretty, pretty poor” and has taken full responsibility for the manner of defeat which saw them concede yet another series on Sri Lankan soil.
The Caribbean side produced a lacklustre effort in the field as Sri Lanka piled up 345 for eight off their 50 overs, courtesy of hundreds from Man-of-the-Match Avishka Fernando (127) and Kusal Mendis (119).
Facing a difficult run chase, West Indies rolled over with hardly a whimper, bundled out for 184 in the 40th over, to suffer a 161-run defeat – their heaviest ever to Sri Lanka.
“It was the sort of start we were looking for, getting a few wickets early but I think after that it all went pear-shaped,” a despondent Pollard said following the defeat.
“It started with me, that catch off Kusal Mendis – it would have been three wickets down and then after that I don’t think we stuck to the plans long enough. Overall, we were outplayed by Sri Lanka.
“At the end of the day we’re here to play international cricket of a high standard and I don’t think we were up to that standard today and at the end of the day if we had to rate this performance I think we were pretty, pretty poor.”
Mendis was put down on two at first slip by Pollard in the third over off pacer Jason Holder and went on to post his second ODI hundred.
Along with Fernando, Mendis helped post a record 239-run third wicket stand, capitalising on loose Windies bowling to take command of the contest at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium.
When the Windies chased, only Shai Hope with a top score of 51 off 65 balls and Nicholas Pooran with 31 off 41, showed any resistance. At one stage, the visitors were 130 for three but lost their last seven wickets for 54 runs.
Pollard said the performance was made even more disappointing especially with the Windies trying to get back into the series after losing last Saturday’s opener.
“In all three departments we weren’t here … and I think that’s disappointing for us. We’ve put in a lot of hard work and it didn’t show, and in a game like today where you want to win and level the series, I don’t think we showed up as a team,” Pollard lamented.
“We can pinpoint a lot of little things but you don’t want to go into finer details. There’s a place for that – we’ll do that internally.
“But overall as a team, we’re very, very disappointed, even with my performance today as well and not being able to rally the boys. I cop this one on the chin, I take this one and we move on to Kandy [for the series finale].”
Pollard said even though the series was lost, he was still expecting a professional effort from the Windies in Saturday’s last ODI.
“Yes, we can’t win the series but every time we get the opportunity to play cricket you want to come out and do it the right way and win cricket matches,” the all-rounder stressed.