West Indies coach Stuart Law believes Shai Hope has the hunger and the drive in him to become on the game’s greats after a solid display on the final day of the second Test against England. Hope’s unbeaten 118 runs took the visitors to a surprising five wicket win at Headingley after losing the first Test convincingly. To make his feat even more impressive, Hope scored a century in both innings to become the first player to do so at the venue.
“He’s a rock, isn’t he?” Law was quoted by cricket.com.au and recalled a conversation before start of play on the final morning in Leeds. He suggested that they bat out till Tea and then see if there was a chance at getting the win.
“He looked at me and I said ‘What’s wrong with that?’,” Law said. “He looked at me (again), shook his head and shrugged his shoulders – and I said ‘OK what’s your plan? ‘We’re going to win’, (he said). That’s God’s honest truth…(and) he went out and won the game.”
“I think the fact he wasn’t over the top in his celebrations just means he’s hungry, he’s driven,” Law said. “He doesn’t want to stop where he’s at now; he wants to keep going. I think that’s a great sign.
“He’s a tough cookie. He’s pretty good now, but he’s got the potential to go great. The challenge for Shai is to stay fit and healthy. If he does that, with the drive he’s got and the mental toughness and will to work, that will just make him better and better.
Law also took a swipe at former England captain and Essex teammate Nasser Hussain who had suggested that this West Indies team was weak for Test cricket.
“People make assumptions all the time,” said Law. “But he doesn’t know the characters that are inside that dressing room – he doesn’t even know me and I played with him at Essex.“Not a lot of these players play T20 cricket anyway. I think it was great we sent a big humble pie to go and chomp on in the commentary box. I’ve seen these guys at close quarters. There’s immense confidence there. There was probably a couple that doubted their ability to cope at this level, but I hope those doubts are now well and truly put to bed and they can start flourishing,” he claimed.