There was a time when the West Indies were the team to beat by all oppositions.The then West Indies team included the like of hard hitting batsmen in Vivian Richards, Clive Lloyd and deadly fast bowling Andy Roberts, Joel Garner and Malcolm Marshall that could rip out any opposition apart. That was once upon a time. Then, the next generation players for the West Indies saw the Batting great Brian Lara, with some decent performers like Richie Richardson, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Carl Hooper and the next generation deadly fast bowlers in Ian Bishop, Curtly Ambrose and Courtney Walsh who carried the good work done by Andy Roberts and co.
Even though the West Indies could not make it to even the semis after the 1983 world cup until the next generation players as said above made it in 1996 after beating the Proteas. However, despite the presence of Courtney Walsh, Brian Lara, Ambrose and Chanderpaul, they could not make it to the second round of the 1999 world cup after collapsing at 110 in the crucial match against Steve Waugh's Australia after having an early loss to Pakistan. It was as though that, the standard of the West Indies cricket had completely gone out of the way since then. Of course, West Indies never dominated the cricket world like they did in the 70s.
But, they were considered to be a decent opposition by all teams. However, their test performance after this can never be taken into consideration. Now, in the recently concluded one day series against England, even their one day performance is found to follow suit. Whatever be the case, West Indies until now was a major challenge for only teams like Bangladesh and Zimbabwe when it comes to playing test cricket. But, now, after their 2-0 loss to England in the Natwest series, it looks like they are suited only for minnows even in their ODI. Perhaps! This can be evident from the fact that they lost to Bangladesh in the inaugural edition of the ICC world T20.
For that matter, even England are way behind in one day cricket compared to other teams barring Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and the West Indies offlate. When it was not possible for the West Indies to pull even one out of the two one dayers played, one can imagine the capability of the West Indies team. No doubt that the West Indies put up a decent 270 on the board in comparison to England's 328. But, can the 58 run defeat that the West Indies sufferred be forgiven? If not for Owais Shah, none of the England batsmen showed any signs of pressure while facing the West Indian bowlers. If not for 2 bowlers who bowled 10 overs, rest of the bowlers ended up with a run rate of 6+, with 5 others going in for 7+.