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Nottingham (United Kingdom) (AFP) – West Indies captain Jason Holder urged his side to be “as positive as we possibly can be” against Australia as he prepares for a potential World Cup classic.
Trent Bridge will play host to the match on Thursday as Holder’s side and a hungry-looking Australia renew a rivalry dating back to the start of the event in 1975.
West Indies came out on top against Australia in the first World Cup final in that year and won the next tournament, also in England, four years later.
But since then Australia have won five titles to emerge as the undisputed kings of World Cup cricket.
Holder said he was ignoring the past to focus on maintaining the form that brought victory over Pakistan last Friday, with a tough test in store against an Australia side also on a high from victory over Afghanistan.
“It’s always been a great rivalry between West Indies and Australia.I think everybody is expecting a really good contest,” he said at Trent Bridge on Wednesday.
“We’re up for the challenge.I think they’re up for the challenge as well.I wouldn’t really get too deep into rivalries.”
The West Indies pacemen used the short ball to devastating effect against Pakistan in their World Cup opener, bowling them out for just 105.
But Holder said the tactics he deployed against Australia would depend on individual batsmen.
“If it’s a situation where we feel a batsman may be susceptible to the short ball, then we’re going to use it,” he said.
“If it’s a situation where that’s not the case, then we’ll find other alternatives.It’s just not stuck on the short ball.”
He said one-day cricket had seen some big hitting in recent years, with Trent Bridge the ground where England smashed the highest-ever one-day international total of 481-6 against Australia last year.
“We’ve all seen the way world cricket has gone the last two years,” he said.”There have been some high totals and there has been some aggressive stroke play.
“We just want to be as positive as we possibly can be.”
Big-hitting Chris Gayle and Andre Russell are both expected to be fit but Holder believes the dimensions of the ground are not as easy as they seem.
“I made a remark to one or two of the guys — I felt like the ground was a little bigger than people think,” he said.
“I always back the guys to go with their strengths first, no matter the dimensions of the ground.I think we’ve just got to hone in on our skills.
“The ground will be one way for both teams.That’s one thing guaranteed.That’s just our plan.”