(Reuters) – West Indies have been knocked out of contention for a Cricket World Cup semi-final spot but the team are already looking ahead to the future with a young core coming to the fore, head coach Floyd Reifer said on Sunday.
West Indies have not won a single game at the tournament since beating Pakistan in their opening match and were ruled out of making the top four after a 125-run loss to India last week left them ninth in the standings.
The Caribbean side suffered narrow defeats to Australia and New Zealand in the group stage and Reifer said the squad have had frank discussions on their performances so far, with an eye on finishing strongly with two more games to go.
“Yes, we’re out of the World Cup but there is still a lot of cricket to play after the World Cup,” Reifer told reporters ahead of Monday’s match against Sri Lanka.
“It’s important for us to… find the winning ways and find the winning formula going forward; it’s important for us to play this game as hard as possible. We want to create that winning culture, it has to start from somewhere.
“We’re going to approach every game in a professional manner. We had a long conversation in the dressing room, we did a lot of soul-searching. It’s important for us… to put up performances, even at the back end of the World Cup.”
Despite a disappointing campaign in England and Wales, Reifer said West Indies cricket had a bright future after a number of youngsters staked their claim at the tournament to be permanent fixtures in the one-day international squad.
“The future of our cricket is good,” Reifer added. “We have a lot of young guys here. (Shai) Hope, (Nicholas) Pooran, (Shimron) Hetmyer, Oshane Thomas. Sheldon Cottrell had a very good World Cup.
“We have young John Campbell, he was injured from early. So our future is good. I’m confident in these youngsters that going forward we can bring West Indies cricket back to where it belongs at the top.
“Yes, it is unfortunate we didn’t get to the final four in this competition but going forward I’m happy from what I have seen.”
(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)