Frustrated West Indies captain Chris Gayle said he needed more help from his fellow top order batsmen after the Caribbean side exited the World Twenty20 following a heavy defeat to Australia on Tuesday.
Gayle was bowled in the first over by Dirk Nannes on Tuesday and West Indies never got going as they stumbled to 105 all out.
The match was in marked contrast to Saturday’s triumph over India in which, significantly, Gayle made a superb 98.
Gayle, who was the only West Indian to make a half century in the competition, made it very clear after their six-wicket loss to Michael Clarke’s side that he needed other players to start producing scores.
“Consistency, that’s the only word I can use right now,” he said. “We are on and off, sometimes we turn up and are unbeatable and no team can play us but it doesn’t happen often.
“In our batting it can’t be just me getting runs, others have to take responsibility.”
Playing in the Caribbean brought extra responsibility for Gayle as fans have flocked to grounds hoping to see some local success and the powerful left-hander said he had felt the burden of those expectations.
“It’s severe pressure and a lot is on my shoulders and I was hoping to get someone to take some of that pressure in the batting department but it didn’t happen,” he said.
“I tried my best, I’m not saying everyone else didn’t, but sometimes I try too hard and get myself in a bit of trouble rather than letting it come naturally.”
The inconsistency was particular evident in the team’s batting.
Twenty20 specialist Kieron Pollard, who has enjoyed plenty of success playing for teams in various domestic Twenty20 leagues around the world, scored just 47 runs in five innings, while all rounder Dwayne Bravo averaged 12 from his four innings.
The normally composed Ramnaresh Sarwan, who has scored centuries in tests and one-day internationals, also looked like he was not completely comfortable with the Twenty20 format.
The team also produced inconsistent bowling and fielding performances and Gayle said he was sorry their supporters had not had more to cheer.
“There are no excuses and I apologise to the fans for our display in this World Cup but we have to hold our heads high,” he said.
“We have worked really hard and hopefully in the test series coming up against South Africa we can give you something to smile about.” — Reuters