We're optimistic of series win - Holder
GROS ISLET, St Lucia (CMC):
The Windies are poised for their first series win over a higher-ranked nation in six years but will be wary of a wounded Sri Lanka, when they clash in the second Test at the Darren Sammy Cricket Ground here today.
The Windies' last series win over a major nation came when they swept New Zealand 2-0 in the Caribbean back in 2012. Since then, their only successes have come against minnows Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.
However, following their emphatic 226-run victory in the opening Test in Port of Spain last weekend, the Windies are now well placed to turn the screws on Sri Lanka, and captain Jason Holder said the opening win had given his side a massive boost of confidence.
"The mood is pretty good. All the guys are upbeat about the occasion. We won a series last year against Zimbabwe, we won a few Test matches last year against numerous opposition. This is another opportunity for us to win a series," the all-rounder said on the eve of the Test.
"We have two matches to close the series out. I would like ideally to close it out in this game, but I've told the guys not to focus on the result.
"We need to focus on the process and focus on what we need to do to win the Test match, and that's individuals accepting their roles and performing - just carrying out their particular roles.
He added: "And if we string together that as a collective unit, then we'll get the results we're looking for."
The Windies surprised many with their crushing win at Queen's Park Oval, outplaying Sri Lanka throughout. They chalked up an imposing first innings total of 414 for eight declared and used aggressive fast bowling and then spin on Sunday's final day to bundle out the tourists twice cheaply.
The victory handed the regional side precious momentum, while putting immense pressure on Sri Lanka, who are yet to win a series in the Caribbean in three previous attempts.