New Zealand v West Indies, 3rd Test, Hamilton, 4th day December 22, 2013

'Some careers are on the line' - Sammy


Darren Sammy has conceded that careers could be on the line after West Indies' 2-0 series defeat, including his own position as captain. His team's hopes disappeared in a session on the third day in Hamilton as they were skittled for 103, and it was far from a one-off implosion from the West Indies batsmen.

Sammy, as he has throughout, spoke honestly and openly while reflecting on another heavy defeat - West Indies' fourth in five matches - but there was a hollow look in his eyes. When asked if he was "angry", he said he wasn't that type of person - "I have good control over my emotions" - but whereas in Wellington, he watched his side fold in seamer-friendly conditions that favoured New Zealand, in Hamilton, there was little in the surface for the pace bowlers.

Overall, Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Darren Bravo averaged over 60 for the series, and Denesh Ramdin's hundred lifted his figure to 38.40, but then the numbers slip away. Marlon Samuels was the major disappointment, averaging 19.50 while Kieran Powell, who had established himself in the opener's position, was 17.33.

"There are tough decisions to be made by the coach and the director of cricket, some careers are on the line, could be mine as well, you never know," Samy said while he sat alongside West Indies' coach, Ottis Gibson. "We cannot continue like this. In any organisation, you need to show graft and commitment. The coach keeps saying if we do the same thing, don't expect a different result.

"Watch us play when we play well and people say wow, things are moving forward, but it's two steps forward, then three or four backwards. Before we went to India, there were six consecutive Test wins. Then, on the tour of India, we got beaten miserably. We escaped in Dunedin by fighting hard with our backs against the wall. There's a lot of work to do, we just need to be more consistent."

West Indies' next Test series is against New Zealand in the Caribbean more than five months away and, given the regression in their form over the last couple of months on the road, the selectors could well decide a change is needed. Sammy has already been removed from the one-day captain's role, which now belongs to Dwayne Bravo, although he remains the captain of the Twenty20 side that will start as defending champions at the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.

"At the end of the day, the selectors recommend the captain. If I'm asked to do the job I'd still do it. They'll make the decision," Sammy said.

At tea on the third day at Seddon Park, there were no such remorseful feelings in the West Indies side. Although their lead was only 18, they knew one solid display, leaving a target over 200, would have given Sunil Narine the chance to be a match-winner.

"We came here to good batting conditions, that's not a 103-run pitch, but credit to McCullum and his boys, they had a plan for every batsman and the way their bowlers bowled out under pressure, we didn't have a response," Sammy said. "The batting unit needed partnerships, and we were unable to do that. I don't know what it is, in the end, it's up to us as batsmen to get the necessary runs, even if they're ugly."

At the moment, West Indies' batting is more often ugly for the wrong reasons.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Basil on December 24, 2013, 0:16 GMT

    Fix the Domestic first-class Competition and things will improve. You are not going to build a great pool of Test cricketers if guys are only playing 5 4 day games a year.

  • Derek on December 23, 2013, 15:46 GMT

    @Basil Springer, well summarized

  • Dummy4 on December 23, 2013, 11:47 GMT

    The problem with West indies is their reluctance to drop under performing players irrespective of their reputation. there are lots of more talented and experienced players waiting outside Ideal xi for west indies in batting order:1.Chris Gayle 2.Johnson Charles 3.Darren Bravo 4. Shivnaraine Chanderpaul 5.Lendl Simmons 6.Dwayne Bravo 7.Dinesh Ramdin 8.Jaison Holder 9.Sunil Naraine 10 Kemor Roach 11 Ravi Rampaul

  • Orlando on December 23, 2013, 11:45 GMT

    It is clear that neither Sammy nor Gibson nor the WI selectors have got the point yet. Yes, even after the humiliating and crushing defeats of these past couple months. The fact that Sammy says that if asked to continue he would, tells me that he still sees himself as part of the solution as against being part of the problem. He should have resigned the captaincy before the India tour, having seen the team rise to 6th on the back of winning against the weakest teams in cricket at the time. But he, Gibson and the selectors believe that there is no real problem other than the lads need to "man up." They don't or won't see that nothing other than starting with an almost completely new team, under new leadership is the only way to make small steps forward. Is it a coincidence that WI A teams tend to perform well consistently? I think not. Theirs is a different environment of players fighting to impress. WI need an A team in test cricket.

  • Dummy4 on December 23, 2013, 11:33 GMT

    the problem is people arent even that passionate anymore to protest against the board and yes ottis isnt teaching the guys to swing the ball everybody else is doing this and they have really good death bowlers to and over all i am sick and tired of seeing the same old goats back in the team i honestly am sadden about this as well cricket brings hope and unity to the caribbean now look what its done devision is upon us now

  • John on December 23, 2013, 9:44 GMT

    The first is to get rid of Gibson..........I have been saying that all along. Where do our batsmen see the swinging ball unless they go overseas. We are suppose to have a coach, Gibson, who has not been able to show our bowlers how to swing the ball or even get Best to bowl consecutive ball within 2ft of each other but he is our coach. Can you imagine he wanted to put chanderpaul off the team instead of using him to help guide the youngsters. We did not put him there to be a politician. you have not been doing your job Gibson!!!!!

  • Phil on December 23, 2013, 3:46 GMT

    The decline of cricket in the Caribbean can only be solved by one thing - money. New Zealand has the same problem and 20/20 competitions have damaged the game in both countries. What would I do? 1 - stop all international ODI cricket(50 overs). I would still hold a fifty over world cup every four years. This would be entertaining since it would be rare to see the format and players would have to adapt during the tournament. 2 - all international test series should have at least three tests. 3 - Bangladesh should be developed by being given real tours and a slice of the TV income. 4 - do not reject 20/20 but use it as a way to generate income. However, I would limit the ease with which players can move between tournaments. Only success in international cricket should lead to riches in places like India. Therefore, an age limit (30+) or a set number of test caps would make you eligible. 5 - push for jail sentences and lifetime bans for any form of fixing.

  • Dummy4 on December 23, 2013, 2:53 GMT

    Anyone who was lucky enough to see the 1st test between India & S. Africa which ended in a nail biting draw will get an idea how far from the top w indies are, to see Piillander bat and bowl and Sammy is colled an allrounder?? I read where Sammy said if the selectors asked him to continue as Captain he would be happy to, selectors paleeasse don't.

  • Don on December 22, 2013, 23:24 GMT

    Even though the structure in West Indies cricket is lacking, we still have a set of players with no head or brains. They keep making the same mistakes. NZ is no big team which will be proven when India goes there. Our guys are a set of overpaid jokers with no sense of pride. We can no longer say that they have no experience.Some have been around for more than 5 years. Look at the other test nations, young players come in and function with immediate impact. Marlon has 5 centuries from 51 matches and says he is the batting manual. Is this guy mental? The management of this team is also a big joke. They fail to understand that sports at this level is a mental thing. A team with less talent can destroy another team with better players. How can you explain Narine not playing in the first or even the second test based on his strong hold over NZ. When I saw our bowling attack I said, who is going to get Taylor out. At the end, 3 games, 3 centuries with one being a double. No common sense.

  • Dummy4 on December 22, 2013, 23:13 GMT

    Need a new coach new management, hire a few fitness experts and work with the players in the Caribbean. All the fast bowlers in west indies (except tino best) are not fit enough. Tino best sadly lacks skill for test cricket he has the heart and fitness for it. After you work with those playing first class cricket in WI select those talented enough willing to work hard Then in 5yrs or so WI can be a force to reckon with once again

  • No featured comments at the moment.