An Interview with Jason Holder

Fri, Nov 2, '18



'Realistically, I can see the West Indies Test team go up to No. 4 in the next two years'

The West Indies captain talks about managing a young team, dealing with the media, and the philosophy behind his favourite Instagram phrase. Jason Holder was a left-field captaincy choice before the 2015 World Cup. Four years later, he is leading them into another one. The criticism hasn't stopped, but Holder has emerged as a thoughtful leader while also turning into one of the world's best Test allrounders. 

What was it like when you first took over the captaincy?

I first got the captaincy in South Africa at the end of 2014. Basically, at that stage it was a situation where we were just transitioning before the World Cup - the next assignment would have been the World Cup. For me it was about setting my ground, laying my foundation to go as a captain and getting to know the players. No doubt it was a tough task. We lost 4-1 to South Africa and then we moved onto the World Cup, where we felt we did a reasonable job to get to the quarter-finals. We would have obviously liked to go on a little further and deeper into the tournament, but personally, I still got some really good performances, and I felt my best way to lead is by example. 

Did you have any leadership experience before that?

Yeah. I captained at youth level - Barbados U-17, Barbados U-19, senior team. I captained West Indies U-19 as well, for parts of the tournament [World Cup]. And you know, I've captained West Indies A as well. I've had plenty of experience as a young captain. I've always been interested in the leadership role, throughout my career. So it wasn't anything new to me. I was just trying to get to know how to lead people at this level.

Leading West Indies must have been the first time you felt the pressure of being a leader, considering there was some noise in the Caribbean about your appointment.

I get criticised every day. In terms of pressure, there was no added pressure. Personally, I feel I get the best out of myself in a leadership position. Regardless of whatever you do, people have something to say. I tend not to let that get to me. More often than not, you sit and do press conferences, media appearances, people take bits and pieces of what they want to make a story. You're often misquoted by the press and people just look for things to say or create an image of you that you're not. So for me it was about understanding that and accepting it for what it is, and just being true to myself. Whenever I speak, I try to speak as honestly as I possibly can. I try not to, for lack of a better word, fool people about what to expect or what we've been doing.

read the complete Interview at ESPNcricinfo