Wed | Aug 23, 2017

‘The blip in the tournament’

Published:Monday | March 28, 2016 | 3:00 AM

NAGPUR, India (CMC):

West Indies captain Darren Sammy has expressed disappointment with his team's three-wicket loss to Afghanistan, but says he is pleased that their goal of advancing to the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup was achieved.

West Indies crashed to a sobering defeat against spirited Afghanistan in a low scoring thriller at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium yesterday, but had already qualified for the semi-finals on the basis of scoring three straight wins before their first loss in the tournament.

"We are very disappointed that we lost the game. Whatever happened today does not affect how we are going to play in the semis," vowed Sammy.

"We wanted to come out of this group winning four out of four, but looking at the history of the tournament, no team has done it undefeated. So we will leave this game here and see it as the blip in the tournament. Now we have two knockouts to play. Two more steps."

Samuel Badree destroyed the top order with three wickets, while Andre Russell picked-up two as West Indies restricted Afghanistan to 127 for seven. But Mohamad Nabi and Rashin Khan with two wickets each contained the Windies big hitters with spin and forced them to squander an easy run chase.

"It is a total we should have got. I think we just kept losing wickets. One partnership of 50 plus would have won us the game. But we just did not bat well throughout the innings," said Sammy.

"We did not take it lightly. They are a side we are supposed to beat and we just did not do it today. But the main objective in coming out of the Super 10 was to qualify for the semis and that we did."

Dwayne Bravo was the top scorer with 28, Johnson Charles scored 22, while Andre Fletcher was forced to retire on 10 with a hamstring injury.

"At the end of the day we just did not play smart enough. The games we have won somebody took responsibility to bat through," he said. "This time nobody did it. Nobody took responsibility. They just left it for the next man to come. Like I said to the guys tonight, we will just leave this game here in Nagpur. It's a new focus now .We just have to be ready."