In the wake of West Indies' 133-run defeat in the second Test in Abu Dhabi, captain Jason Holder has said that his young, inexperienced side is making progress, but emphasised that it would take time for that to reflect in the results they achieve.
"I don't feel any pressure as captain," Holder said. "It is a young and inexperienced squad; it will take time to get the results we have been looking for. We have been inconsistent for the last number of years. I'm here to do a job and I'm trying to do the best I possibly can."
West Indies have had a prolonged underwhelming spell in Test cricket and are currently ranked No. 8 in the format. However, they have turned in a couple of spirited performances recently; they saved the second Test against India in Kingston in July-August and came from behind to run Pakistan close in the first Test in Dubai.
Holder asked for patience in West Indies' developing team and cited their performance in the Dubai Test as evidence that they are moving in the right direction.
"We understand the position we are in, but it's been almost a decade that we have been struggling. We are in situation where we are trying to get things right, but also taking in some young players. It will take some time for these boys to develop and we have to give them the opportunity to do so.
"If you have watched our cricket for the last couple of months, we have shown signs of improvement. In Dubai, we put ourselves in a position from where we could have won it. It is just a matter of consistency here."
While consistency may be a longer-term project, West Indies' immediate task is to find a way to avoid a series whitewash as they head to Sharjah for the third Test. After whitewashes in the T20I and ODI series on the tour so far, even a hard-fought draw in Sharjah might represent progress.
Holder said the side must convert starts and take all their chances in order to push for positive results.
"The difference between our team and the big teams is that we have not capitalised after getting starts and that is due to the lack of experience. We haven't carried on. Also, if you give chances to good players, they make you pay. We put down a few chances and that hurt us in this Test match. At this level, giving good players two opportunities is bad."