Sammy, Russell cut from WICB contracts list
West Indies' Twenty20 captain Darren Sammy has not been contracted by the WICB for 2015-2016, along with allrounder Andre Russell and spinner Sulieman Benn. Chris Gayle, who had previously turned down West Indies contracts more than once, including last year, is not on the list of centrally contracted players which was increased from 12 to 15. Sunil Narine, who had also turned down a contract last year and is currently suspended from bowling in internationals due to an illegal action, also does not feature on the list.
The contracts, issued for the period from October 1, 2015, to September 30, 2016, include several batsmen who have debuted for West Indies in Test cricket over the past year and a half, including Jermaine Blackwood, Leon Johnson, Shane Dowrich, Shai Hope and Rajendra Chandrika. Legspinner Devendra Bishoo was also added, as well as fast bowlers Shannon Gabriel and Sheldon Cottrell.
Sammy had turned out for West Indies in the T20s against Sri Lanka as recently as November last year, though he was left out for the preceding ODI series on that tour. Globetrotting T20 specialist Russell had played both the ODIs and T20s on that tour. Left-arm spinner Benn last represented West Indies during their home Test series against England in April 2015.