Several callers to 91.1FM Talk City’s cricket call in programmes have complained in varying stages of bitterness about the captaincy of Darren Sammy. So the question is should Darren Sammy be removed as West Indies captain and, if so, who should be the new skipper?
Sammy’s captaincy will not immediately invite comparisons to Frank Worrell or Clive Lloyd or Viv Richards. His tactics have a cookie-cutter quality to them. It is as if team strategy is predetermined in the dressing room and must stay the course in the oven to achieve the desired results. However, when things don’t go the way of the Windies, Sammy appears to be at a loss and makes little modification to his strategy.
As a motivator and as a builder of team spirit, only the fiercest of critics would say that Sammy has failed. The team seems, on the field at least; appear to be united under Sammy’s captaincy. However, when things go against the West Indies, despondency does set in as quickly as sunset in Mayaro. Again, there are question marks here.
As a player, there is no doubt that Darren Sammy gives his best. His batting can be exhilarating at times but blighted by poor shot-selection in the main. Sammy’s bowling is not threatening but he does have the capacity to take wickets, especially against left-handers. He does not, in my opinion merit a place in the team.
So if the selectors remove Darren Sammy as skipper, who is the most likely candidate? Three names come to mind: Denesh Ramdin, Kirk Edwards and Dwayne Bravo.
Ramdin is currently number two behind Carlton Baugh and cannot at this time hold his place on the team. However, given Baugh’s indiscretions during the second Test, this may change in the next few weeks. Ramdin has the confidence of the Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board. He got the nod to replace Daren Ganga in December, ahead of strong contender Rayad Emrit.
Edwards has skippered Barbados during the Caribbean T20 Championships and part of the regional four-day tournament. Definitely a contender, but he is still unable to hold a place in the ODI or T20 squads. The Windies selectors would have to go for separate captains for different formats to accommodate Edwards. In addition, his captaincy against T&T in the Caribbean T20 semi-final loss still rankles with some Barbadian fans.
Dwayne Bravo is perhaps the best candidate at this time would he be available to the West Indies to guide a young side? There is a huge cloud hanging over him.
So is Sammy the best candidate by default? What do you think?