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Shamar Joseph: ‘I wasn’t even coming out to the ground today’

Shamar Joseph

“I told my skipper I would bowl to the end until the last wicket falls,” the fast bowler said after bowling an unchanged spell of 11.5 overs for seven wickets

Shamar Joseph almost didn’t make it to the field in the second Test match in Brisbane. A powerful kick from Mitchell Starc on the third day nearly sidelined him. He didn’t anticipate being present for the fourth day’s game. However, thanks to his doctor’s intervention, Shamar Joseph managed to perform an unforgettable bowling spell, leading his team to a triumphant victory at Gabba.

Joseph began to bowl near the end of the first hour on the fourth day. Shamar Joseph took seven wickets during his continuous bowling spell of 11.5 overs. The only break he had was during dinner time.

“I wasn’t even coming out to the ground this morning to be fair. I must give a shout-out to the doctor,” Joseph told the broadcaster after the game. “He is an amazing doctor to me. He told me to come to the ground for a reason, even if it’s just to support the guys.”

“But I came and he did something to my toe. I don’t know what he did but something worked. So I just had that time to go out there and bowl and bring this game home for my team.”

In a cricket match between West Indies and Australia, West Indies needed to get eight Australian players out while Australia needed an additional 156 runs to reach their goal of 216 runs. Once Shamar Joseph, a player from the West Indies, started bowling, he only asked his team captain, Kraigg Brathwaite, to let him continue playing until they eliminated the last Australian player.

“It was just [about being] positive. That’s all. [My team-mates] said just go out there and do it – take wickets,” he said. “It was just our positivity. I am not that tired because I wanted to do this for my team. I told my skipper I would bowl to the end until the last wicket falls.

“It doesn’t matter how my toes are, I’m okay. I did it for him and I am happy that he is proud of me now.”

This was West Indies’ first Test win in Australia since 1997, and the first against them since 2003, and the magnitude of the feat wasn’t lost on the 24-year-old.

“I feel like we won the series. Even though it’s 1-1 I feel like we won the entire series,” Joseph said. “I feel really amazing for my team-mates. They are really encouraging and I am glad that I made them proud and bring the series to 1-1.

“Tears came to my eyes right now. I already cried during my five-wicket haul [in the first Test]. It’s just happiness. That’s the emotion I can bring out right now. Just happy that we won the Test.”

Brathwaite about Shamar Joseph: ‘This is amazing, but it has to continue’

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Brathwaite was happy with the win, but now wants his team to continue putting in performances like this one.

“We won a Test match in Australia. It’s amazing,” he said at the presentation ceremony. “It does a lot [for West Indies cricket]. It means a lot. It’s been a number of years since we’ve won a Test match here.

“But my message to the group is that this is the beginning. It’s amazing, we enjoy this, but I think this has to continue.”

Brathwaite said some harsh words from former Australia fast bowler Rodney Hogg served as inspiration for West Indies in the day-night Test.

“I must say we had two words that inspired us in this Test match. Mr. Rodney Hogg said that we were pathetic and hopeless. That was our inspiration,” Brathwaite said. “We wanted to show the world we’re not pathetic.

“And I must ask him ask him, are these muscles big enough for him?” Brathwaite asked, flexing his biceps.

Brathwaite found out just an hour before the game started that Joseph would be available to bowl. He praised Joseph as a “superstar” and acknowledged his leadership through his actions.

The doctor said Shamar Joseph got an injection and Shamar Joseph is quite good and then he [Joseph] told me he’s going to do it. I had to back him.

“He’s a superstar and I know he’ll do great things for West Indies in the future. Just his belief… he told me today he’s not putting [the ball] down till it’s finished. That’s the example for this team to follow.”

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