Difficult conditions will create better players: Drakes
SOUTHAMPTON, England (CMC):
West Indies Women's head coach, Vasbert Drakes, believes the challenging English conditions confronting his side will make for better players once they can learn from the experience.
The reigning Twenty20 champions are currently undergoing a training camp at the Ageas Bowl here in preparation for the ICC Women's World Cup starting June 24, and have so far encountered a mix of sunshine, rain and chilly weather symptomatic of the early England summer.
Drakes said not only would the unpredictable conditions create better players but better persons, as the experiences would bring critical qualities to the fore.
"Day by day, we are starting to understand that we are playing in different conditions and it will define you as a person because you are going to need a lot of character," Drakes explained.
West Indies Women have struggled in the two warm-up games to date - against a strong England XI last Wednesday and Southern Vipers on Friday.
In both contests, the Caribbean women were easily outplayed as they battled to come to grips with the different pitches, moving ball and the climatic conditions.
Drakes said he was not overly worried at this stage as the squad was still undergoing the acclimatisation process.
"In the last couple of days, you get some sunny patches but also you get a lot of breeze at the ground and it has been challenging for them," he pointed out.
"For a lot of them, this is the first opportunity to play in England and it's just the process of that acclimatisation period. "
West Indies have been installed as one of the favourites for the upcoming tournament, especially after having won the T20 title last year in India and also having reached the final of the last 50-overs World Cup four years ago. They will face reigning champions Australia Women in their opening match on June 26.