West Indies v Pakistan, 4th ODI, Barbados May 2, 2011

We must rotate strike better - Sammy

ESPNcricinfo staff

Darren Sammy, the West Indies captain, has urged his batsmen to post "bigger, match-winning totals" and singled out the rotation of strike as an area his team needs to improve upon in the fourth ODI against Pakistan in Barbados. The visitors have already taken the series 3-0 but Sammy is hoping to "pull one back" at the Kensington Oval.

"Rotating the strike is one area we have to get better at," Sammy said. "If we rotate the strike, that upsets the rhythm of the Pakistan bowlers and that would lead to us posting bigger, match-winning totals.

"The 'dot ball' percentage has been high and we need to combat the opposition bowlers. One of our major problems has been that we have not been putting enough runs on the board. As a batting unit we hit a lot of boundaries, but we have to get better at ticking over the strike, especially against the Pakistan spinners."

The West Indian batsmen failed to post competitive totals in all three games so far, struggling to score against offspinners Mohammad Hafeez and Saeed Ajmal in particular. In the first two matches in St Lucia, they were restricted to 221 for 6 and dismissed for 220. They had reached a sound position of 92 for 1 in the 21st over in the third at Bridgetown before they collapsed for 171 all out.

The bowlers also managed to take only five Pakistan wickets in the first two matches, but came close to winning the third, in which they took seven. Pakistan were 49 for 4 at one stage before Misbah-ul-Haq steered them to a series-clinching victory.

"I can't fault the bowlers," Sammy said. "They have been superb for us and brought us close to a victory in the last match. I believe if we put the runs on the board, the bowlers will do the job for us. We are looking to create winning opportunities and when we do that we have to grab it with both hands."

West Indies brought back Ramnaresh Sarwan to the squad after he had been left out for the first three games. Sarwan's previous appearance was the quarter-final defeat against Pakistan in the World Cup. "We know he is a good player," Sammy said. "With him back it is a plus for the team and we wish him all the best. He will be a key player in those middle overs as we look to keep the strike ticking."

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  • Dominic on May 3, 2011, 12:46 GMT

    West Indies selectors have many questions to answer.I remember Simmons touring England a few years ago,he did better that some of the other players on the tourbut still was not selected for a few years. We need someone to build partnershipsi suggest Nash, if Chanderpaul is at log heads with the WICB. There are so many problems with the authorities and selectors of W.I cricket. Itis time fot them to wake up and smell the coffee or call it a day.

  • Douglas on May 2, 2011, 18:54 GMT

    "It was in response to that April 29 letter, that Chanderpaul has once again questioned why he was then dropped for the series against Pakistan. "As far as you are concerned I was dropped from the team not for lack of performance, age, fitness and/or discipline but it is the new direction WICB is going in. What direction is that, when three of the four best batsmen are dropped from the team?""


  • Dominic on May 2, 2011, 11:32 GMT

    I have notice the recent comment by Sammythat they must try to rotate the strike better. Is it possible that Sammy could address his short comings as a player who can bowl a little and bat a little, as far as i am concerned he should not be in the team as captain or player.The WICB and the WIPA on a smaller scale ,West Indies cricket is in the mess it is.

    I believe if the situation is not resolved,internatonal cricket will be a dream during this decade.

  • Karan on May 2, 2011, 8:44 GMT

    @Doubleheader: It is good that you agree with Sammy, then. In any case, Sammy does seem correct in his general analysis here. What the West Indies need to work on now is developing new batsmen, especially in the middle order. This will probably take some time, but they do seem to have a much better opportunity to improve now compared to some recent years with the help of Bishoo and such on the bowling front. Nonetheless, at the least their form over the last few years hasn't really given them any great legacy which they need to defend, and as such they can afford to just develop a team even if it means losing a few series (because they did that anyway with their old players).

  • Dummy4 on May 2, 2011, 8:26 GMT

    How about we rotate the West Indies to an associate team?

  • Ronald on May 2, 2011, 7:25 GMT

    No Sammy, you got it wrong. Your batsmen, including you, need to go in the nets and learn how to play spin proficiently to be able to rotate the strike. Your team play like amateurs.

  • Andrew on May 2, 2011, 3:52 GMT

    Sammy may not be the greatest captain, but he certainly seems to know where his weaknesses are. The only problem is that with the team he's got, they'll do well to lose the series 5-0. With or without the rest of their senior players, they were never going to win this series. Something is seriously wrong with cricket in the Windies.

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