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May 27, 2011 at 12:08pm IST

Rotating strike key to handling spinners

Trinidad: Wary of India's lethal spin attack, West Indies coach Otis Gibson has advised his batsmen to rotate the strike quickly while negotiating the slow ball bowlers of the World champion side in the upcoming tour.

The Caribbean batsmen had struggled against the Pakistani spin trio of Saeed Ajmal, Mohammed Hafeez and Abdur Rehman in the Test and ODI series, and Gibson wants his players to learn from the mistakes and perform better against India.

West Indies lost the ODI series against Pakistan 2-3 and drew the Test series 1-1.

Rotating strike key to handling spinners: Otis

The Caribbean batsmen had struggled against the Pakistani spin trio.

India, top-ranked Test team, will begin its Caribbean tour here on June 4 with a one-off Twenty20 clash, which will be followed by a five-match ODI series and three Tests.

While Harbhajan Singh is certain to figure in both the Test and ODI series, leg-spinner Amit Mishra and off-spinner Ravi Ashwin have so far been included for the One-dayers.

Indian spinners have shown good form in the IPL but Gibson believes his side can compete well against them.

"It is not a lot of time but we got a lot of players that have played the spin and made runs against spin before. People just have to be clear what their game plan is against spin and back themselves and their ability," Gibson said.

The coach, though, advised his players to not let the spinners bowl too many dot balls.

"They are setting us up, working us out and getting us out quite easy so we need to be able to rotate the strike against the spinners a lot more and make sure that the bowlers aren't bowling too many balls in succession to us.

"Sometimes, we look very tentative and we sort of lock ourselves in a hole and then our only response is to try to hit ourselves out of the hole. We got to find the balance between attack and defence," Gibson was quoted as saying by 'Trinidad Express'.

West Indies skipper Darren Sammy also feels that their fate in the contest against India would depend a lot on how they handle the spinners.

"We as a batting group have to play spin better. Not only in the Test series but in the One-Day series as well, they gave our batsmen trouble.

"I know the guys are working hard with the batting coach (Desmond Haynes) in the nets and I can foresee a better performance against India," Sammy said.

"The batting definitely has to come to the party where we could bat long and put good totals on the board so the bowlers could have something to work with. It's a big series and we all looking forward to it," he added.

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