No ease-up for Ireland - Estwick
BELFAST, Ireland (CMC):
Bowling coach Roddy Estwick has warned Ireland that West Indies will be playing at full throttle, when the two teams meet in today's one-off one-day international.
The Caribbean side boast a side which includes the likes of superstar Chris Gayle and stroke-maker Marlon Samuels, and will face an Irish side with much to prove after recently attaining Test status.
And even though West Indies will be more focussed on the five-match series against England starting in a week's time, Estwick said the Ireland contest was of no lesser importance.
"They (Irish) will see attacking cricket. We're here to make a statement," Estwick said.
"We're on a mission, we're here to get enough points in this ODI and the five against England to help us qualify automatically for the World Cup so we've got to take this game very, very seriously."
He added: "We need points to move us forward in the 50-overs rankings ... and all the boys are here so we're looking forward to putting on a good show tomorrow."
West Indies are already in danger of failing to qualify automatically for the 2019 Cricket World Cup in England. They are currently ninth in the ODI rankings, with hosts England along with the remaining top seven teams, gaining automatic qualification.
With eighth-place Sri Lanka swept 5-0 by India recently, West Indies now need to beat Ireland and then also trounce England 4-1 or better, in order to assume eighth spot in the rankings.
West Indies will remember the humbling experience at the ICC World Cup two years ago when the Irish chased down 305 to comfortably win by four wickets, and Estwick said he expects a similarly tough encounter.