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Cricket : Sammy: I have a plan

Source: Trinidad Daily Express
Newly appointed West Indies white-ball head coach Daren Sammy says he has the plan to transform the regional side into an elite international team but said that kind of transformation takes time.

The team’s 35-run loss against hosts Zimbabwe in the ICC 50-0ver World Cup qualifiers didn’t help Sammy’s cause but it did give him an insight into how much more work he and his players have to put in.

Speaking of his approach when he first took over, Sammy told the media yesterday during a virtual press conference: “I think the first thing I did is that we had honest conversations of where we were at as a team, which is number nine or ten in ODI cricket and understanding what has happened and why we are at number ten and see what an elite performing team looks like, with the different roles I spoke about before, and understanding the steps we need to take to become that.”

The Windies coach continued: “So it was understanding what our openers were doing versus the best openers in the world and where they are at and what they are doing that makes them successful,

“And we now start to progress and start taking the steps and putting measures in place, whether it is the way we practice or our mental approach to the game, or improving our skills. It was the realisation of where we were at as a team and what we needed to do in order to become that elite-performing team. And we’ve got a plan. We’ve started.”

Sammy, himself a two-time T20 World Cup winning captain added: “Obviously, the question of finance will come into play but for us to move forward, we need to have more cricket, good pitches and in my view, an understanding of roles and what is required.”

Sammy acknowledged that his group was, ”not short of the match-winners.” But he noted that “match-winners must be consistent.”

Nevertheless, he said: “I am excited at what we have – Shai Hope moving to number four and stabilising the order; the power we have at the top with Brandon King and Kyle Mayers and then you look at the batting of Nicholas Pooran and the bowling of Alzarri Joseph, Keemo Paul and Yannic Cariah…who is a big miss for us.

“If you look at the games we played, we were able to get eight or so wickets. It is one of the things I challenged the bowlers to do. Had our fielders backed the bowlers up, we would have bowled out every team before 50 overs. I am still in my fact-finding stage but I am pleased and excited about what we have and the guys who are on the sidelines and how they could come in and have an impact in this team.”

The Windies will play their final group stage game against the Netherlands bowling off at 3 a.m. T&T time today.