St. John’s (Antigua): Iconic former West Indies captain Sir Vivian Richards has hailed Jason Holder’s elevation to the Test captaincy and says it will be crucially important the 23-year-old gets the respect of his squad.
And the former master batsman also rejected the idea that Holder was too young and inexperienced to shoulder the responsibility, reports CMC.
“Well, I have heard maybe that some folks are suggesting that he is too young, but it is better to start at that particular age,” Sir Viv, who never lost a series as Test captain, said on Saturday.
“And if he gets lucky enough and we are successful, you have a long successful period of your captain being in place rather than the chopping and changing on a regular basis.
“I believe this individual does have the ability. Certainly, he comes over very well and you hear about the respect factor you get from other members of the dressing room and that is of vital importance because when you have that respect, it is amazing.
“People get on board with you, and it’s like what they say in the sailing environment, all hands on deck.”
Richards said Holder had also done well to improve his game, especially his batting.
Holder made his way into the West Indies team as a fast bowler but struck his maiden Test century against England back in April and followed up with an unbeaten 82 against Australia a month later.
However, Richards stressed that time would be the greatest judge of Holder’s captaincy.
“When you look and see what’s around him, when you look and see how he would have gone about his business as a batsman, you can see there is some improvement… but certainly the signs are there and I think may be it’s not a bad choice,” the legendary batsman said.
“We will only know when you are in the picture and he is in the picture now and we will get a great opportunity to find out exactly whether it’s a good choice or not.”
Richards is the second former West Indies skipper to come out in support of Holder following Brian Lara’s endorsement of the Barbadian.
The 63-year-old Lara is considered the most dominant batsman of his generation, garnering 8,540 runs from 121 Tests at an average of 50.
Significantly, he led the West Indies in 50 Tests, winning 27 and losing only eight, and never lost a series.