Hope backed to shine by West Indies captain Holder

West Indies captain Jason Holder has backed opener Shai Hope to shine at the Cricket World Cup.

The Windies have looked sharp with the bat in their World Cup warm-up matches and start their campaign against Pakistan at Trent Bridge on Friday.

Hope's form has been hugely impressive, with the 25-year-old having clocked up three centuries in warm-up matches for the tournament, including a haul of 170 against Ireland on May 5.

And, after Hope's 101 helped West Indies to a 91-run victory over New Zealand in their final tune up on Tuesday, Holder believes the batsman is well placed to star at the World Cup.

"Shai has been carrying some form for a long time in the limited overs format and he's really confident," Holder told a news conference.

"I think he's worked out pretty much his method of scoring. It's been very, very consistent, which as a group we've probably lacked in the recent past.

"It's really good to see a young batter stepping up and being as consistent as he has been and leading the charge for us, and we've got power around him.

"I think we've got a really good mix in terms of our batter line-up, but obviously Shai has stood out in the recent past with his success."

Given the Windies' form with the bat, Trent Bridge – with its short boundary – could present an ideal venue to kick-start their campaign, but Holder insisted that his side have no preconceptions ahead of their opening fixture.

"I don't want to sit here and try to predetermine what's going to happen," Holder added. "We assess the conditions and we play to suit. It doesn't matter where we're playing.

"That's the way cricket is played, and that's the nature of the game. I don't want to sit before a game and say we're looking to score 500 or 600.

"We are all excited to play in England. The magnitude of this tournament speaks for itself. There's no need to sit here and harp on about it, we just want to take it game by game."

Pakistan offered little resistance to England in a 4-0 series loss earlier in May, before losing to Afghanistan in their final preparation match.

"We are not thinking about the previous results," Captain Sarfraz Ahmed told a news conference. 

"We didn't play well as a team, but our batters are performing well, so we don't think about it. We are very focused and we are very hopeful as a team that we will do well."

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