West Indies cricket February 24, 2013

The Sammy debate at the crossroads

Roger Sawh
During his time as captain, a number of fans have kicked and screamed, and he has been one of the most polarising figures in the region since ascending to the helm
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The West Indies captaincy has been described as a poisoned chalice because it is one of the most difficult jobs in the sporting world. For one, you are following in the footsteps of giants like Lloyd, Sobers, Richards, and Worrell. The weight of history on your shoulders is tremendous, from multiple World Cups to years of dominance to worldwide respect and admiration for teams of yore. Moreover, you are also seeking to diplomatically manoeuvre in a multinational dressing room. Jamaicans, Guyanese, Bajans, Trinidadians, St Lucians and others are all trying to coexist for the sake of cricket, but there is quite a lot that culturally separates them.

Unlike England or Australia, with players from different states or regions playing with a united national conscience, the West Indies' collection of nationalities makes team captaincy akin to being the Secretary General of CARICOM (the Caribbean Community). Over the past two decades, all of this has happened against the backdrop of a lot of losing, controversies with the administration, cries of nepotism, and too many stresses and strains to mention.

The West Indies captaincy is definitely a hot seat to occupy. During the past two years, Darren Julius Garvey Sammy has been the one with his bum on the roast. To say that his tenure has been less than smooth would be an understatement, because 'Smiling Sammy' has, in fact, been one of the most polarising figures in the region since ascending to the helm.

During his time as captain, a number of fans have kicked and screamed, saying that he isn't the right man for the job, that he doesn't deserve a permanent spot in the team, that he is keeping a more deserving bowler (usually) out of the playing XI, and that he is a bowler who only thrives in favourable conditions. More often than not, observers have been able to find an area of his performance to pick on, from 'agricultural' batting strokes to pedestrian pace bowling. While his captaincy hasn't found as much disfavour, there have also been claims that he is a sentinel of coach Ottis Gibson, and that his place as captain is to enforce the 'new culture' of Gibson's management.

Though murmurs of discontent have continued, Sammy the cricketer has persisted, mixing steady but not devastating bowling with an uncompromising batting style to be a solid member of the team in all three formats.

Now, approximately two years into his tenure as captain, the Sammy debate has arrived at a pivotal juncture. The first two one-day internationals that West Indies play against Zimbabwe are the first time that Sammy is not in a West Indies playing XI (regardless of the format) since becoming captain in 2010. For those who have been anti-Sammy, it's a moment that has been long overdue. For those who supported Sammy from the beginning, it might be a tense situation. And for those that have recognised an improvement in the team as a whole and have given Sammy the go-ahead as long as the team is growing, this is a chance to see whether the team has developed thanks to the man from St Lucia, or in spite of him.

Two matches aren't much to judge by, especially against an opposition that isn't among the most formidable on the world stage, but they are still a test in some respects. The Zimbabweans can play with a free spirit because they haven't much to lose. West Indies, on the other hand, are coming off a 0-5 whitewash at the hands of Australia, and 2-3 loss at the hands of Bangladesh - they need to get back on track in the 50-overs format.

Dwayne Bravo steps into the leadership role in Sammy's absence, and if he enjoys significant success, Sammy may once again find the lights of inspection being focused on him. The inspiring World T20 triumph released a lot of pressure on Sammy as a leader. Supporters and cynics alike had to acknowledge the positive vibes that came from the West Indies team. He has, for better or for worse, made an impact on West Indies cricket, and the more you look at it, the better the influence seems to be.

However, despite all that, some may argue that he has outlived his usefulness. There is a notion that Sammy's time as leader was simply a necessary evil in accomplishing the greater goal of 'fixing' West Indies cricket - the captain needed to be a glue and not a divider, a disciple and not a rebel, and a loyalist and not a globetrotter in order for the team's challenges to be overcome. There is little doubt that Sammy has helped to bind the team, preach a consistent and positive message, and show an unwavering commitment to Caribbean cricket. Under Sammy, the seeds of paradigmatic shift have been sewn, the tree of stability has grown to a decent height, and fruits of success have begun to bear. The lingering question, though, is whether or not the job is done.

Considering the possibilities, winning or losing against Zimbabwe might not spark an immediate change in the status quo, but it may certainly affect the timeline. If the team can win emphatically, it may suggest that Sammy's task of building a strong foundation is far enough along to no longer necessitate him as a bold leadership figure. On the other hand, unconvincing victory or even defeat could simply reaffirm Sammy's importance, and show the Caribbean public (especially his detractors) that he is an essential part of the team machinery.

There are, of course, peripheral factors that will be important - Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels are also not playing, and their absence diminishes the quality of the batting line-up significantly. Additionally, the continued policy of not choosing the evergreen Shivnarine Chanderpaul for ODIs leaves the team very short on experience. Be that as it may, Sammy's absence will be a significant subplot throughout the matches. Metaphorically, in the absence of the captain, will the ship sail or sink? For now, the great Sammy debate stands at the crossroads.

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  • Anonymous on February 25, 2013, 11:32 GMT

    There will always be debate about this, but when in the WI was there never a debate about anything??? Some say Sammy should not be test captain or even captain. This was a huge burden he took up with a smile (literally) when no one else either wanted it or was qualified for it. WHo in the present team can be that captain? One can also see the younger players looking up tp him. Keep in mind Sammy has not wasted his opportunities, look at the ICC rankings and see where he is compared to the other WI players. With him we are able to bowl out top oppositions, something we struggled with or wasn't even capable off in the not to distant past. The times the team had failed under his tenure was mainly due to batting, something the captain cannot control. He sets very good fields and uses bowlers well. Why the debate??

  • RandelE on February 25, 2013, 2:33 GMT

    I am a supporter of Darren Sammy. His placement in the team has always been questioned by his critics from the second match he played for the west Indies. If the attitude of the rest of the team was similar to his as displaying a sense of purpose i'd say his career is over as the WI captain. His performance with the bat and ball has been fluctuating but his attitude as a player and leader of WI cricket has NEVER changed from day 1. I'm sure if the rest of the team would develop this attitude towards WI cricket Sammy would feel like his job is accomplished. I would rather have 11 Sammys play for WI cricket with his attitude than 11 good players with no team spirit and a sense of purpose. Till then his future as captain of the team is not at the crossroads.

    "There is little doubt that Darren Sammy has helped to bind the West Indies team"...

  • David Gordon on February 24, 2013, 23:39 GMT

    How easy it is for us to forget when it suits us. Remember a certain cricketer from Jamaica namely "Jimmy Adams" I can vividly remember that when he was made captain he was in the poorest form of his life and everyone agreed that were it not for his position of Captaincy he could not command a place on the team!!! However some individuals insisted for the sake of team unity he was the best person to lead the team. Tell me What's the difference between Jimmy Adams then and Darren Sammy now?

  • kent jones on February 25, 2013, 14:36 GMT

    @raj-b Chanders was once captain and he gave it up voluntarily for his own reasons. Lets look around the region for other players to captain. Dwayne Bravo for ODI and Ramdin for test. Leave Sammy as T20 boss.

  • turner on February 25, 2013, 12:27 GMT

    So what happens when the IPL begins and Sammy joins Dwayne Bravo, Pollard, Gayle, Narine and others, have we started thinking of who will captain the side during that period? Will it be Ramdin, Sarawan or Devon smith? I am not a Sammy fan but he has undoubtedly made his mark on the team, whatever one may say about the balance of the team when he plays. I think we need to stick with him as captain but hav others who can do the job in his absence. It must also be noted that Sammy has been our least injured cricketer in the past 2 years. To do that as captain speaks volumes. So i say lets rally around Sammy and focus on continuing on the upward trend and stop looking for things to nit pick about. WI cricket will be the ultimate beneficiary

  • raj.b on February 25, 2013, 7:56 GMT

    Chanders as test cap,Sammy as odi and t20,Sammy is not a bad odi andt20 cap,but look for rebilding chanders is the man to captain the test,,,,,,,

  • Sanjeeb Kumar on February 25, 2013, 6:41 GMT

    Dwayne Bravo has led the West Indies well.It was Zimbabwe, but the West Indies had lost to Bangladesh recently.Therefore, a recovery has to be seen.A convincing series win against Zimbabwe gives hope.What to me in Southern Asia is a proof that cricket in the West Indies is in decent health is the contribution to the debate by the supporters of the west Indies team.The amount of contributor means a lot of support for the game.

  • Lawrence on February 25, 2013, 5:25 GMT

    As much as Sammy's heart is in the right place and as much fight and determination he has, Bravo will do and has done a better job as captain in the 2 ODI wins. While this competition does not show what they can do against all opponents, Bravo is a better batsman, bowler, more assertive captain and better fielder.

    Bravo has used the skills of Deonarine, Sarwan, Pollard and the other younger players quite masterfully in the 2 ODI wins.

    The West Indians can still use Sammy as a useful bowler and lower order batsman in the ODIs and T20s but need to instill Bravo as captain now going forward.

  • Gurmeet on February 25, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    Haha.. a Canadian telling the cricketing world what to look for in a cricket team's captain. To me Sammy is a decent Captain, Bowler, Batsmen and very good Man manager. If Batting/Bowling legends are the criteria for Captains then we(Indians) would never have lost a single tournament under Sachin and check the records, the west indies was at he lowest when legend Lara was at the helm.

  • Vivek S on February 25, 2013, 4:56 GMT

    Oh so West Indies have started winning and Dwayne Bravo is ready to take over?? This is a needless article at this point, where Sammy has been given a break.

  • Anonymous on February 25, 2013, 11:32 GMT

    There will always be debate about this, but when in the WI was there never a debate about anything??? Some say Sammy should not be test captain or even captain. This was a huge burden he took up with a smile (literally) when no one else either wanted it or was qualified for it. WHo in the present team can be that captain? One can also see the younger players looking up tp him. Keep in mind Sammy has not wasted his opportunities, look at the ICC rankings and see where he is compared to the other WI players. With him we are able to bowl out top oppositions, something we struggled with or wasn't even capable off in the not to distant past. The times the team had failed under his tenure was mainly due to batting, something the captain cannot control. He sets very good fields and uses bowlers well. Why the debate??

  • RandelE on February 25, 2013, 2:33 GMT

    I am a supporter of Darren Sammy. His placement in the team has always been questioned by his critics from the second match he played for the west Indies. If the attitude of the rest of the team was similar to his as displaying a sense of purpose i'd say his career is over as the WI captain. His performance with the bat and ball has been fluctuating but his attitude as a player and leader of WI cricket has NEVER changed from day 1. I'm sure if the rest of the team would develop this attitude towards WI cricket Sammy would feel like his job is accomplished. I would rather have 11 Sammys play for WI cricket with his attitude than 11 good players with no team spirit and a sense of purpose. Till then his future as captain of the team is not at the crossroads.

    "There is little doubt that Darren Sammy has helped to bind the West Indies team"...

  • David Gordon on February 24, 2013, 23:39 GMT

    How easy it is for us to forget when it suits us. Remember a certain cricketer from Jamaica namely "Jimmy Adams" I can vividly remember that when he was made captain he was in the poorest form of his life and everyone agreed that were it not for his position of Captaincy he could not command a place on the team!!! However some individuals insisted for the sake of team unity he was the best person to lead the team. Tell me What's the difference between Jimmy Adams then and Darren Sammy now?

  • kent jones on February 25, 2013, 14:36 GMT

    @raj-b Chanders was once captain and he gave it up voluntarily for his own reasons. Lets look around the region for other players to captain. Dwayne Bravo for ODI and Ramdin for test. Leave Sammy as T20 boss.

  • turner on February 25, 2013, 12:27 GMT

    So what happens when the IPL begins and Sammy joins Dwayne Bravo, Pollard, Gayle, Narine and others, have we started thinking of who will captain the side during that period? Will it be Ramdin, Sarawan or Devon smith? I am not a Sammy fan but he has undoubtedly made his mark on the team, whatever one may say about the balance of the team when he plays. I think we need to stick with him as captain but hav others who can do the job in his absence. It must also be noted that Sammy has been our least injured cricketer in the past 2 years. To do that as captain speaks volumes. So i say lets rally around Sammy and focus on continuing on the upward trend and stop looking for things to nit pick about. WI cricket will be the ultimate beneficiary

  • raj.b on February 25, 2013, 7:56 GMT

    Chanders as test cap,Sammy as odi and t20,Sammy is not a bad odi andt20 cap,but look for rebilding chanders is the man to captain the test,,,,,,,

  • Sanjeeb Kumar on February 25, 2013, 6:41 GMT

    Dwayne Bravo has led the West Indies well.It was Zimbabwe, but the West Indies had lost to Bangladesh recently.Therefore, a recovery has to be seen.A convincing series win against Zimbabwe gives hope.What to me in Southern Asia is a proof that cricket in the West Indies is in decent health is the contribution to the debate by the supporters of the west Indies team.The amount of contributor means a lot of support for the game.

  • Lawrence on February 25, 2013, 5:25 GMT

    As much as Sammy's heart is in the right place and as much fight and determination he has, Bravo will do and has done a better job as captain in the 2 ODI wins. While this competition does not show what they can do against all opponents, Bravo is a better batsman, bowler, more assertive captain and better fielder.

    Bravo has used the skills of Deonarine, Sarwan, Pollard and the other younger players quite masterfully in the 2 ODI wins.

    The West Indians can still use Sammy as a useful bowler and lower order batsman in the ODIs and T20s but need to instill Bravo as captain now going forward.

  • Gurmeet on February 25, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    Haha.. a Canadian telling the cricketing world what to look for in a cricket team's captain. To me Sammy is a decent Captain, Bowler, Batsmen and very good Man manager. If Batting/Bowling legends are the criteria for Captains then we(Indians) would never have lost a single tournament under Sachin and check the records, the west indies was at he lowest when legend Lara was at the helm.

  • Vivek S on February 25, 2013, 4:56 GMT

    Oh so West Indies have started winning and Dwayne Bravo is ready to take over?? This is a needless article at this point, where Sammy has been given a break.

  • jahbert on February 25, 2013, 4:54 GMT

    As a person sammy look like a great guy to be around but as a cricketer his skills at the top level is not quite there. his batting performance is not up to standard, too comical at time. bowled reasonable at time or two but tends to hide at crucial moment of games. bowling below 130 kmg as a strike bowler is his own doing and field out of position in the slips. test cricket is definitely not his format. west indies need to groom pollard for captaincy! he has that lloyd ability, can bat when pressure is asked of him and is for sure one of the best fielders in the world of cricket. that where he impresses me most someone who leads by example.

  • Satish on February 25, 2013, 4:03 GMT

    I don't care who Sammy keeps out. But having a hardest trier in the team who knows his limits nd who can work with the team is a MUST for any team. There are 100s of players who are more talented than Steve Waugh, Fleming, Dhoni, Nasser Hussain but all these are great captains for their respective teams. Captaincy is entirely different cup of tea which doesn't belong to everyone.

  • Sriram on February 25, 2013, 3:38 GMT

    If Sammy is not there in the turbulent times of WI cricket . WI would have been relegated. He is the man who stood up for WI cricket , taken the responsiblilty ,which has been forced on hi.I like Gayle and Samules but attitude of them is reasonably selfish. Cricket is a team game folks .Sammy is the ri8 choice but he should strive to improve his skills

  • Bushmaster on February 25, 2013, 3:24 GMT

    Following his recent surprising inclusion into the IPL auction for a modest but respectable fee,it would appear sammy himself is looking for an exit strategy away from West Indies cricket.If ever there was a time to cash in this was it. World cup winning 20/20 captain etc !!

    No one should be surprised at this as Sammy has always been a shrewd operator. Whether it was clapping or making all the right noises.He has been handsomely rewarded for his self effacing platitudes

    In my opinion the sooner this Sammy charade is over the better.Merit selection should be the order of the day not how loud you can clap. In Big Bravo the West Indies seem to have found a cure for the clap.

    All the players seem to have responded positively to his selection as captain. It is proof positive that Sammy is dispensable and his former charges appear only too keen to hammer that point home with indecent haste I might add!!.

  • Tips on February 25, 2013, 2:59 GMT

    Sammy lacks as both a world class batsman and bowler. I do not think he is a good captain either. He is not a tactician. Of course he has a strong character. He never gives up and has a great never say die attitude. That is the type of attitude all members of the team should have, not just Sammy. If the rest of the team members can find that type of attitude more consistently then the Windies can become more successful. I would not measure a captain based on a trait (the right attitude) that all members of the team should possess. I would measure a captain based on how he leads the team, his tactics on the field, how he uses his players including bowlers, fielders and batsmen. Under Sammy's watch the Windies continue to perform well in patches. They continue to lack a killer instinct when they are on top of the opposition. They continue to be clueless as to how to get some batsmen out. In ODI's especially they always reach a point where they just go through the motions trying to maybe just bowl out the 50 overs regardless of the context of the match, whether they are in a great position or not. What the Windies need now is a real 'breath of fresh air' leader. Someone bold. Someone who is willing to make a call or a tactical decision on the spot. They need a visionary. Someone who can spot the weaknesses of teams and exploit that weakness. All teams have weaknesses even the current number one South African side. Finally. Which of the following is a trait of a good captain: One who makes tactical decisions based on statistics or one who assesses the current situation and conditions and decides based on these?

  • Crazywicric on February 25, 2013, 2:39 GMT

    Sammy is good for WI cricket. He speak of WI cricket belong to the people of the carribean. His team approach is the way forward. Sammy need to put more value for his wicket.

  • windiesfan on February 25, 2013, 2:29 GMT

    The guy has done a great job as Windies Captain--there is stability in the team, discipline in the bowling department,they are a far more competitive unit since I have followed West Indies cricket and rekindled that champion spirit in the Windies....

  • devin singh on February 25, 2013, 2:13 GMT

    Well said roger....

  • raj on February 25, 2013, 1:51 GMT

    The Sammy debate of course will be around for a while. It is true that under his captaincy WI has shown fight. But at the same time WI has not climbed in the ODI or test rankings at all. Sammy puts up a good fight but not enough to justify his place. To really qualify as a good captain he needs to either bat or bowl neither of which he does well. He should be retained for the T20's but WI should start looking for a captain for the ODI's and Tests. Thanks to Sammy for keeping WI in the company of Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and New Zealand in ODI and Tests. WI deserve to be in greater company after all. We were tops once and deserve to be there again. Unfortunately the problem lies with the insularity that the WI displays. They are not interested in WI cricket supremacy at all.

  • Daryl V Titre on February 25, 2013, 1:45 GMT

    This writer obviously knows very little about present day West Indies cricket to write such utter rubbish. Darren Sammy is an integral part of the West Indies team and has been so for the past two years. He has been a good captain and has taken West Indies from a point of Bangladeshness to the T20 World Cup Champions. West Indies captaincy is not at the crossroads. Darren Sammy is the Wets Indies Captain and he will remain the captain as long as the team continues to show signs of a bright future.

  • Pat on February 25, 2013, 1:28 GMT

    I believe Sammy has done a favorable job with the WI, there has been some bad times but it doesn't fall on Sammy's shoulder solemly. WI is a team, a group of men with different mind, personalities, strength, they all need to put their heads together to bring the change the win Sammy alone can't win. Sammy has done a fair share of glueing the team together, when everyone was all about self because they come from big islands the small island man came and brought a different mentally and that has help West Indies Team to rise again.

  • Urban on February 25, 2013, 0:53 GMT

    Darren Sammy is neither the best batsman nor the best bowler in the region but he has clearly put his heart into the game, when others who are more gifted have been lured elsewhere.

    Sammy has done a better job of uniting the team than any of the last several captains. In addition, he has been making his contribution with both bat and ball and has been quietly accumulating runs and wickets.

    Few of the more rated Windies bowlers have been very consistent and many of our batsmen have been similarly unreliable, to the detriment of the team. Thus, seemingly average Sammy is, in the final analysis, no worse than any of them. In fact, Sammy has often been a game-changer by taking crucial wickets, adding valuable runs or effecting a spectacular catch.

    While it is fine to engage in constructive criticism, it is sad to witness respected West Indian commentators as they launch personal and disrepectful attacks on the skipper. I truly believe that history will be kinder to Sammy.

  • Hoady on February 25, 2013, 0:48 GMT

    We just had the WI guys here in Australia, and although they got beaten in the ODIs, they were never out of their depth, and gained in stature with every game. Beating Zimbabwe, with all respect to those guys, won't prove anything of the replacement captain. WI seem really settled and getting back to their aggressive best under Sammy. I hope he keeps the job.

  • zabocca on February 25, 2013, 0:22 GMT

    This crop of WI players have no common sense. They have no concept of keeping the scoreboard ticking by taking singles and twos, alternating the strike. Too often they get out because they do not use their head. Look at Narine batting against Australia, in one over he hit 4 consecutive sixes, but he still trying to go for more. Why not just settle down and pick your spots. Trust me if these guys were playing for Clive Lloyd or Viv Richards they would not get away with some of the nonesense I see them doing. Also why the heck dont they leave their big gold chains in the dressing rooms. How many white players you see taking the field with these big chains

  • amerito on February 24, 2013, 23:42 GMT

    For those people who keep saying that there is no place for Sammy in the team. When Lara was at the helm of west indies cricket, when achievements did they get. Stop treating small island people like trash and not deserving a chance on west indies cricket. Sammy has taken west indies to the next level and those persons who don't like it just have to deal with it. if we still believe in biasness west indies cricket will never rise. west indies cricket is not only players from Trinidad, Jamaica and Barbados NO. After Courtney Walsh Sammy has been the most successful captain for West Indies. No dought about it. hurray for SAMMY.

  • De Agent on February 24, 2013, 23:36 GMT

    Sammy is from the Windwards and he will never be accepted in the wider region as a West Indian captain, so sad,but the man continue to live a simple life and always smiling,give the man a brake, those who should captain run off to different parts of the world playing cricket, and none wanted the job, so why people always at the man throat, well am a Windward Island man, and for to long players always get the shitty end of the stick, so enjoy the time Sammy, when its done you certainly will left a mark on West Indian cricket

  • anthony James on February 24, 2013, 23:33 GMT

    Gayle is the spiritual leader of this team.He and Samuels are certain Picks in any format and between them should lead the teams.Stantokie and Badree should be fixtures in the limited overs teams and should Invariably open the bowling backed up by Narine and Rampaul.Roach and Best have no place on these Teams.Fidel,Johnson and Beaton are worthy considerations.Enough of the quarter rounders called allrounders.The pool of batsmen should be Gayle, Powell,Samuels,DM Bravo,Pollard,DJ Bravo,Wkt Charles,Dwayne Smith,SArwan,chanderpaul.Pollard is to bat no later than no.5

  • avmd on February 24, 2013, 23:28 GMT

    WI is not the top team and the best possible playing eleven should play. It cannot afford the luxury of having a spot taken just for captaincy. There are others who can lead. Sammy is a decent man but not a player of international standard and don;t think he slects himself in the eleven. He should be replaced by a deserving bowler.

  • Kess on February 24, 2013, 23:26 GMT

    This debate is at a dead-end, not a crossroad.

    Whosoever touches Sammy, will affect West-Indies Cricket negatively. Sammy's greatly influences the game not only on-field, but even more so behind the scenes. His value comes not merely because of the Zeal and Skill by which he plays his game, but the way he is able to unite and synchronize the Team, player to player, players to administrators, administrator to administrator.

    Whosoever judges him by the misguided idea that leadership is what is found at the front will be disappointed.

    For Darren Sammy exudes the idea of leadership that is found at the front, at the side and even at the very back. He wins while winning and he wins while losing, thus he never loses.

    Darren represent the Spirit that is West-Indies Cricket. If you separate the mango from it pulp's, what are left...? Surely not a mango.

    So is Sammy to WI. His only agenda is West Indies Cricket and this he wears as his very own skin....and not a uniform.

  • BeatDfliggingball on February 24, 2013, 23:21 GMT

    Sammy is a very industrious fella. Maybe, he shud be WI captain for Test matches. WI probably shud do like d aussies, have a captain for each format, done!

  • Narsingh on February 24, 2013, 23:18 GMT

    This should be the time for Sammy to say to him self and put WI cricket frist and come good with bat and ball or stepdown.

  • elsmallo on February 24, 2013, 23:18 GMT

    Sammy is unlucky in that there are several others in the side who can perform his 'role' as well or better than him - Pollard, Bravo and Russel. But where these guys on their day seem to be able to win cricket matches, Sammy's contribution is fairly constant - he catches well, bowls some tidy spells and might get a quick 20/30 coming in late. Pollard can win matches with the bat, Bravo with the ball, and Russel is a similar type to Sammy, only younger. WIndies true problem now is finding these match-winning players - Samuels being injured has shown up the rest of the batting and Roach seems to have stalled with the ball. Their current line-up suits 20/20 but more specialists are needed in the longer game.

  • RSG on February 24, 2013, 23:15 GMT

    Darren Sammy: #8 ODI All-Rounder. #9 Test All-Rounder. #24 T20 All-rounder. What was that about him being good for T20s only, and about him being a 'non-batting' captain?

    Yeah. You in a sorry state when you don't let facts affect your opinions. Stats speak for themselves guys. Try to give the man some support for a change instead of just crying like babies for the men of old. It's time to move forward. Together.

  • RSG on February 24, 2013, 23:07 GMT

    I will just post some stats for all of you to consider. As of today, Sammy is the number 9 all-rounder in Tests. The number 8 all-rounder in ODIs. He is ranked 24th in T20s.

    So tell me again how he's a 'non-batting' captain and can't justify his inclusion except in the shorter formats? Because the ICC seems to think he's an all-rounder. This is why Sammy has my full support, because he's doing the job consistently, even while so many criticize and hate on him every chance they get.

    And I just have one question--who is fully ready, mature and capable enough to replace him right now? And please don't say someone we tried already, or even my own country-man, Bravo, who likes to party more than the entire team combined, and only just figured out again that he's an all-rounder and that there's cricket outside of the IPL. Love you Bravo, and you did well today, but you have some growing to do.

    So, you come up with a better captain who can keep us on the up and up and Sammy can go.

  • tony G on February 24, 2013, 22:54 GMT

    Sammy has done well for the WI cricket. I used to hate having him on the team, but he has won my vote. He should continue as captain, but should also others like D. Bravo to give it a shot every now and then. I think we west indians are toooooo hard on out own at times.

  • anthony James on February 24, 2013, 22:44 GMT

    I remember,not too long ago,WI winning a Test match over seas in soth africa,under Chris Gayle and a series here against Eng in the WI under Gayle,our most effective since captain Richardson. WICB President Hunte,Erniste hillare,Gibson,Sammy and there supporters are all jokers!The record speak for itself.To make progress You have to do better than Gayle.Gibson and his cohorts have only brought confusion and fear.Gibson and Sammy are selfish.They both should go immediately!

  • Brown on February 24, 2013, 22:29 GMT

    I like to change the subject. when i start playing cricket in my school day,i have learn that to get a back to the wicket in case you get the chance to run out some one. these recent player dont do that. they throw the ball to hit stump which they never do, they have just play five one dayer they have not run out a single person ,sammy he dont study enought detail of the other team is not a good captain recent turn around with W.I. was only because Samuel improvement

  • Stephen Sealy on February 24, 2013, 22:23 GMT

    My countryman Sammy has done what Hooper, Lara, Chanderpaul, Sarwan, and Gayle could not do. You should say that WI is at a cross-road. Look at Australia; they are trying to use three teams to juggle cricket overload. This will provide a better balance and exposure to more players.

    Sammy is pure water; he went through all layers, There is nothing more to prove. We just need to continue working on this slid foundation. Back off Sammy!

  • Owen John on February 24, 2013, 22:23 GMT

    There is little doubt that Darren Sammy has been an outstanding captain for the West Indies. He has united the team and brought smiles to the faces of West Indian fans again.

    I remember when we won the World T/20 Championship last year how proud so many of us were. Under Sammy there is renewed interest in the game in the region. I do, however, believe that as captain of a team such as the West Indies Sammy needs to demonstrate an understanding of the value of his wicket while batting. Until he can do so his presence in the team will always be a point for debate.

  • bird on February 24, 2013, 22:21 GMT

    I think thats it for Sammy, why change a winning team and captain with a 2-0 victory. They now need to resuffle the rest of management who contribute to west Indies disaster. I always thik that some players are not happy and it cause problems, if you have workers and they are not happy they can sabatoge you. All the best guys.

  • Jah on February 24, 2013, 22:00 GMT

    Think about progress progress things are getting better under Sammy leadership also with the management

  • Vibert Wagner on February 24, 2013, 21:55 GMT

    We need a Guyanees or a Jamaican to captin the WI test team, Sammy should be the T20 and one ODI captain. Sammy on the WI test team presents a problem which keeps better players off the test team, we need players with dual roles on this team to be effective against the top test teams.

  • Ivan John on February 24, 2013, 21:55 GMT

    I must commend Sammy for having a strong dedication to wanting to serve the west Indian community. He has done a reasonable job, and have served the cause quite well however, I would rather see a more established west indian cricketer take over the captaincy.I support the writer who recommended that Sammy captain the T-20team. His batting does not meet the standard of a west Indies batting Captain. sometimes it hinges on embarrassment to our community.

  • kent jones on February 24, 2013, 21:37 GMT

    There is no doubting that Sammy has played an integral part in the bonding and unifying of the players from WI. His worth in the side has mainly been down to his inspiration and guidance he gives as captain and leader. However as player, batting or bowling he has not really been a standout and his inclusion in the side has resulted in an inbalance of the team and been responsible for the problems in both batting and bowling. It is time that we look at changing the structure of selection. Maintain Sammy as captain for the T20, utilise Dwayne Bravo as ODI captain and Ramdin as the test captain. This would allow the selectors the liberty to restructure the side without having to think about Sammy as part of the ODI or test squad.

  • banker on February 24, 2013, 21:34 GMT

    Darren Sammy has good qualities as a cricketer that is most suited to the shorter form of the game. The demands of test cricket namely, long hours of batting and concentration,sometimes toiling hard in adverse conditions to hold your team together are qualities that seems lacking in Sammy's armory. Dwayne Bravo on the other hand is a very fine all rounder that can easily fill that void. He is a superior quality player to Sammy and play with like intensity. It would be a welcome and bold move for the WICBC to effect the change in leadership and install Bravo as the test captain and keep Sammy at the helm of the T20 and one day team so we can play a more attractive brand of cricket.

  • fred mcdavid on February 24, 2013, 21:25 GMT

    Sammy has done a reasonably good job. However I think he should be the one day skipper, Sammy needs to be a reliable all rounder to be selected to the test side. Of course he is keeping out a strike bowler, can we play Best, Roach, Rampaul and Sammy in the same XI?

  • Abiose on February 24, 2013, 20:42 GMT

    Talk about suitability of technique. Many have said the same about Dhoni but he has scored a double. Sammy is no way in the same class as abatter but if you check the records he has been better than most of our so called strike bowlers and his batting has improved vastly.

  • Leggie on February 24, 2013, 20:08 GMT

    I remember a India vs WI test match last year where WI were a bowler short. Sammy bowled a marathon spell and kept runs under check. He bowled unchanged for almost 2 sessions, and never complained. That summed up Sammy's character. The fighting spirit that he brings into this WI team is unmatched.

  • Riddymon on February 24, 2013, 19:58 GMT

    I've said this numerous times and I'll say it again, I don't understand why everyone makes it seem like Sammy is the problem. This should be evident from when Gayle was captaining and the side was still losing all their games with a much strong team. The fact of the matter is that unless the team starts performing as a whole, they will never be as successful as they used to be. Too much inconsistency has plagued. They shouldn't even be relying on his batting at number 9 to win games. He does well as a bowler so i have no issues with that but because they top order always fails or the middle order collapses, his batting is highlighted as he's required to put up a big score to get Windies into a good position. I feel that it doesn't matter who's captaining....he's doing a good job....let him be. The team as a whole needs to pull their socks up.

  • nizam on February 24, 2013, 19:28 GMT

    Chris Gale/Smith Kerion Powell/Charles Marlon Samuels/Edwards Dareen Bravo/Carter Shiv Chandrapaul/Sarwan Dyawne Bravo/Sammy Dinesh Ramdin/Thomas Roach/Best Rampaul/Johnson Bishoo/Narine Miller/Permaul

  • sharvon on February 24, 2013, 19:06 GMT

    If we continue to believe that the problem with west indies cricket is the captain and coach then we are sadly missing the point. A change of captaincy will continue to be more of the same. i believe that sammy has done a fair job. At this time, west indies cricket has much to worry about; the captaincy is the least of their worries.

  • Joseph on February 24, 2013, 17:54 GMT

    This is a very pertinent article, especially at this crucial avenue we are now. I personally believe that Julious (Darren Sammy) has done a commendable job in captaining 'this' West Indies team. Considering the limited resources (world beaters) we have in the caribbean I think he has done a gr8 job. Alas, considering the progress the team has made, I think it is indeed time to ponder a new captain in test matches (2 years time). This 2 yrs will give the selectors ample time to blood a new captain in tests(Ramdin, DJ Bravo). Sammy's absence will certainly leave some question marks over captaincy again. However, I don't think some people have given much consideration 2 what he has done for this team and the state it was in when he got the captaincy. I admire his warm spirt and stubborn determination he always shows. For now though-Sammy all the way!!!!!!

  • vish on February 24, 2013, 16:46 GMT

    Sammy is a puppet in the hands of Gibson. WI. cricket will never improve overall with Gibby there. I wonder how much of his contract money he shared in the collusion.

  • lbw375 on February 24, 2013, 16:45 GMT

    Despite Sammy being the inspiraton some here are proclaiming, the facts are we were destroyed 5-0 by Austra lia and beaten 3-2 by Bangladesh, Yes you heard me BANGLADESH !

    I can live with Captain Sammy in T20s, but Denesh Ramdin shoud be test captain with Dwayne Bravo as ODI captain

  • lbw375 on February 24, 2013, 16:42 GMT

    @daneale - What does Sammy not choosing himself as Captain have to do with anything ? Darren Sammy was elevated to the Captaincy of the West Indies after Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Dwayne Bravo were all sidelined. His transition from peripheral player to Capaincy was pushed by his fellow countrymen WI CEO Earnest Hilaire and Presdient Julian Hunte.

    I agree with Tim O'Connor. Sammy's place can be justified in the T20 and maybe the ODI team but he's a huge liability in the test team. A bunch of young fast bowlers (Delorn Johnson, Ryan McLean, Andrew Richardson, Shannon Gabriel, Ronsford Beaton) are unable to make their debut or play because of Sammy's presence at # 8. Additionally Dwayne Bravo cannot play test cricket because Sammy the passenger has to be accomodated.

    @Louis Wiltshire If we are going to depend on Barbados cricket then Windies cricket is buried. Have you been following Barbados recently

  • Pontiac on February 24, 2013, 16:17 GMT

    Yeah, get Sammy out of the Test side, and replace him with, say, the guy who is as of Jan 2013 the #9 ranked Test all rounder. I am thinking of course of Darren Julius Garvey Sammy.

    It is however worth asking whether he should still be in the team but excused of captaincy in one or the other formats. The reason for this is that it takes mental energy to hold the team together as it does to maintain and improve his individual skills.

  • Jahanzeb on February 24, 2013, 15:42 GMT

    I think Sammy has done a reasonable job with this side, there has been a lot of factors hindering Westindies progress in the recent years. But Under Sammy they seem to be moving in the right direction, its unreasonable to expect Westindies to be a dominating force as they were 20 years ago. However under Sammy they have become competitive again. I think if he stays in charge by 2015 WC Windies would be serious contenders.

  • Joseph on February 24, 2013, 15:27 GMT

    Sammy may not be a Lloyd or Viv or may not be very dominant with bat or ball but what he lacks in those areas he aptly make up with guts ,determination , a diehard spirit and a never say die attitude which since he took over as captain as seen the WI show a lot of fight and have start to play hard and very competitive cricket after years of giving up matches tamely. So for all naysayers I think Sammy heart is in right place if all and sundry can just give a little support and cooperation WI will rise again.

  • Ricardo Williams on February 24, 2013, 15:16 GMT

    Sammy will have to perform with the bat and ball if he is a consistent all-rounder and if his figures are not proving his worth, he will have to go. The team is too weak to have a captain that is not consistently scoring runs and a wicket-keeper that can't bat. I like Sammy as a captain, but West Indies success will have to ultimately come from a captain who can bat and batsmen who earn their place in the side and is not too big to fail, and bowlers who can take wickets and a wicket-keeper who can keep and score runs to solidify the middle order. When the West Indies team management get to review all these performances then they will be able to make a clear decision on the future of the team.

    On the other-hand if West Indies can improve in all these areas then they can afford an under-performing, but great thinking captain as Sammy as long as he is bringing the win results. I like Sammy, but his future is on thin strong thread and one day soon the thread is sure to snap.

  • YouGetMe on February 24, 2013, 14:00 GMT

    Personally think he is a great captain and good player. His bowling maybe slow but it does get wickets, even the big and crucial ones. His batting just needs to improve but he can accelerate but most of the time gifts his wicket. Although i support Bangladesh i would still love to see Sammy continuing, he is good player!

  • louis wiltshire on February 24, 2013, 13:41 GMT

    West Indies cricket will not be great again until Barbados cricket rises again. Check the records Sammy is the first non batting non bowling captain West Indies have had. The Gibsom mantra results from his sadness of never beeing a West Indian team member of any merit

  • Tim O'connor on February 24, 2013, 13:31 GMT

    I am a fan of Darren Sammy, however I believe he should be replaced as captain for the test team but remain in charge for ODIs & T20s. He justify's his role in the shortened version for his batting alone, which can win games for the WI. His bowling can also contribute, remember the T20 world cup final? Test cricket however, I feel it is time for him to be replaced. His batting technique is not suited to the longer form but the main reason for replacing him is he takes up a position in the team which could be given to another bowler. West Indies now have a variety of options now in the bowling departemant, whether that be spin or fast bowling & its time for Sammy to make way. I feel Sammy is a good captain & with Dwayne Bravo not currently in the test team (he has replaced Sammy as captain in the first 2 ODIs against Zimbabwe) the obvious question is would replace Sammy as skipper? With no obvious candidates jumping out at you, I'd go for a leftfield selection...Marlon Samuels!

  • chervon on February 24, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    very very true the exact words i read was said as soon as i heard sammy isnt playing the 2 games...i want that same team to play against sri lanka or the aussies without sammy and gayle then i can really comment............

  • anoop on February 24, 2013, 13:07 GMT

    Sammy is the best! My fave cricketer

  • daneale on February 24, 2013, 13:05 GMT

    What cross rd what?to me a load of hog wash,Sammy did not pick himself as captain,so live wid that.who is world beater bowler he is keeping out?all are the same,they depend on form to help them out not quality,put them in a hat and pull out those you want to play and hope for the best.lets get real this west indies team is very poor on quality bowling and batting.Gibson seem to have them doing the right thing best,and thats feilding,too many times the bowlers has to take 16 and 17 wickets to bowl out a team in 1 inning.

  • daneale on February 24, 2013, 13:05 GMT

    What cross rd what?to me a load of hog wash,Sammy did not pick himself as captain,so live wid that.who is world beater bowler he is keeping out?all are the same,they depend on form to help them out not quality,put them in a hat and pull out those you want to play and hope for the best.lets get real this west indies team is very poor on quality bowling and batting.Gibson seem to have them doing the right thing best,and thats feilding,too many times the bowlers has to take 16 and 17 wickets to bowl out a team in 1 inning.

  • anoop on February 24, 2013, 13:07 GMT

    Sammy is the best! My fave cricketer

  • chervon on February 24, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    very very true the exact words i read was said as soon as i heard sammy isnt playing the 2 games...i want that same team to play against sri lanka or the aussies without sammy and gayle then i can really comment............

  • Tim O'connor on February 24, 2013, 13:31 GMT

    I am a fan of Darren Sammy, however I believe he should be replaced as captain for the test team but remain in charge for ODIs & T20s. He justify's his role in the shortened version for his batting alone, which can win games for the WI. His bowling can also contribute, remember the T20 world cup final? Test cricket however, I feel it is time for him to be replaced. His batting technique is not suited to the longer form but the main reason for replacing him is he takes up a position in the team which could be given to another bowler. West Indies now have a variety of options now in the bowling departemant, whether that be spin or fast bowling & its time for Sammy to make way. I feel Sammy is a good captain & with Dwayne Bravo not currently in the test team (he has replaced Sammy as captain in the first 2 ODIs against Zimbabwe) the obvious question is would replace Sammy as skipper? With no obvious candidates jumping out at you, I'd go for a leftfield selection...Marlon Samuels!

  • louis wiltshire on February 24, 2013, 13:41 GMT

    West Indies cricket will not be great again until Barbados cricket rises again. Check the records Sammy is the first non batting non bowling captain West Indies have had. The Gibsom mantra results from his sadness of never beeing a West Indian team member of any merit

  • YouGetMe on February 24, 2013, 14:00 GMT

    Personally think he is a great captain and good player. His bowling maybe slow but it does get wickets, even the big and crucial ones. His batting just needs to improve but he can accelerate but most of the time gifts his wicket. Although i support Bangladesh i would still love to see Sammy continuing, he is good player!

  • Ricardo Williams on February 24, 2013, 15:16 GMT

    Sammy will have to perform with the bat and ball if he is a consistent all-rounder and if his figures are not proving his worth, he will have to go. The team is too weak to have a captain that is not consistently scoring runs and a wicket-keeper that can't bat. I like Sammy as a captain, but West Indies success will have to ultimately come from a captain who can bat and batsmen who earn their place in the side and is not too big to fail, and bowlers who can take wickets and a wicket-keeper who can keep and score runs to solidify the middle order. When the West Indies team management get to review all these performances then they will be able to make a clear decision on the future of the team.

    On the other-hand if West Indies can improve in all these areas then they can afford an under-performing, but great thinking captain as Sammy as long as he is bringing the win results. I like Sammy, but his future is on thin strong thread and one day soon the thread is sure to snap.

  • Joseph on February 24, 2013, 15:27 GMT

    Sammy may not be a Lloyd or Viv or may not be very dominant with bat or ball but what he lacks in those areas he aptly make up with guts ,determination , a diehard spirit and a never say die attitude which since he took over as captain as seen the WI show a lot of fight and have start to play hard and very competitive cricket after years of giving up matches tamely. So for all naysayers I think Sammy heart is in right place if all and sundry can just give a little support and cooperation WI will rise again.

  • Jahanzeb on February 24, 2013, 15:42 GMT

    I think Sammy has done a reasonable job with this side, there has been a lot of factors hindering Westindies progress in the recent years. But Under Sammy they seem to be moving in the right direction, its unreasonable to expect Westindies to be a dominating force as they were 20 years ago. However under Sammy they have become competitive again. I think if he stays in charge by 2015 WC Windies would be serious contenders.

  • Pontiac on February 24, 2013, 16:17 GMT

    Yeah, get Sammy out of the Test side, and replace him with, say, the guy who is as of Jan 2013 the #9 ranked Test all rounder. I am thinking of course of Darren Julius Garvey Sammy.

    It is however worth asking whether he should still be in the team but excused of captaincy in one or the other formats. The reason for this is that it takes mental energy to hold the team together as it does to maintain and improve his individual skills.