West Indies captain Jason Holder hailed the win over England in the first Test in Southampton as one of the best ones picked by the team. After cricket made a return after nearly four-month hiatus enforced by novel coronavirus, all eyes were glued on the contest between England and West Indies. But despite playing home conditions amid favourable conditions, the Three Lions were unable to beat Holder & co. and now trail 1-0 in the three-match series.
Speaking after the win at the post-match presentation ceremony, Holder said: "One of our best victories. Yesterday was the best day I had in Test cricket. All the bowlers toiled hard yesterday, and it was a hard-fought day of Test cricket. I don't think any team knew. We had been sat at home doing nothing. We had time to prepare, but you never know. John took a blow today, but hopefully he will come through. We knew what was at stake yesterday evening.
"We knew we had 98 overs, and we had to go to 7PM. Alzarri and I thought we would bowl till 6:30 and the other two would take over. It would've been difficult to push for a win if we didn't bowl extremely well on a flat pitch."
Speaking at the post-match press conference, Holder praised man-of-the-match winner Shannon Gabriel who made a return from an ankle injury, and Jermaine Blackwood. "Shannon is just one of those guys who keep doing it. He has a massive, massive heart and he's been through a lot.
"He wants success so badly. His body hasn't held up the way he would like but to see him back out there fit and well and bowling fast for the West Indies is always a pleasing sight. He deserves every bit of success he's had in this game. I'm really, really happy for Shannon, I know what he's been through.
"We kept in contact while he was doing rehab. At some stages he was very frustrated by how things were going but he stuck it through," added all-rounder Holder, who himself took a Test-best 6-42 in England's lowly first innings 204.
"We all know when Shannon is fit and healthy, he is a handful and he proved it in this game."
Speaking of Blackwood, Holder added: "He had an outstanding first-class competition -- his case to get back in the team was pretty strong. He's not a slouch at this level either, he has done well for us and I hope he can kick on."