Stuart Law: West Indies cricket in development mode, but light shines at the end of the tunnel

Stuart Law isn't expecting the glory days of West Indian cricket to return just yet, but he believes his current crop of players have the ability to stamp their mark on the international scene.

The Australian has coached the Caribbean side for 12 months and recently oversaw a Test win in England, as well as a series win on foreign soil against Zimbabwe.

Despite a convincing innings loss to New Zealand in the first Test at Wellington, Law knows his young squad has the talent to bounce back.

"We have some real quality players and limited experience at this stage, but every day is a new experience," law told the media ahead of the second Test in Hamilton.

"We are a developing team and when you are in development mode, you have good days and bad days.

"We put down day one in Wellington as one of those days that didn't quite work out for us, but I think we got it right in the second innings. We are making good strides, but we have a lot more work to do."

The crushing first-Test defeat inside four days has been compounded by the one-match suspension imposed on captain Jason Holder for a slow over-rate.

The tourists barely averaged 12-overs per hour during their bowling stints and with Holder already carrying a warning from the Zimbabwe series, the ICC (International Cricket Council) has enforced the standard ban.

Law says he has no issues with the punishment.

"Losing your captain is a massive loss," said Law. "But looking back, we only have ourselves to blame.

"The ICC has directives to penalise teams for a slow over-rate and the last couple of Tests, we have had a slow over-rate.

"We will miss Jason's quality batting and bowling, but it will be a seamless replacement.

"Kraigg [Brathwaite] is the vice-captain, so it won't be a big shock to the team and we are confident we have adequate cover to replace Jason.

"He is very calm - he is a levelled headed bloke."

One of the Blackcaps' chief destroyers in Wellington - Neil Wagner - is expected to continue his short-pitch bowling tactic in Hamilton.

The Otago paceman snared 7/39 in the first innings, as the 'Windies' were rolled for 134 inside four hours.

Neil Wagner, Blackcaps, West Indies
Neil Wagner in action against the West Indies Photo credit: Getty

Law, who played one Test and 54 ODI's for his country, is confident his batsmen can implement the right gameplan to nullify Wagner's effect, pointing to Wagner's second-innings effort, where he claimed only two West Indies scalps.

Law said it's all about the learning process his side is currently experiencing.

"We combated him [Wagner] very well in the second innings, I thought.

"At one stage there, we had him going at 11 runs an over. We sat down and worked out a plan - individual plans - on how to approach him.

"Some guys felt comfortable taking him on and some guys aren't - it's not so much going out there to take him down, but to be aggressive with your mindset, be it attacking or defensive, and execute.

"We have to learn how to combat the mental pressures of Test cricket. The guys need to understand how to construct a Test innings consistently.

"You can't just go out there and blast away, and expect that tactic to work every ball. An innings fluctuates as it develops, so they have to understand that."

The second-Test begins on Saturday at Hamilton's Seddon Park.

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