Image courtesy of: Dawn.com
Bravo feels honoured to be captaining his country for the Champions Trophy
West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo has replaced Darren Sammy as the country’s new ODI captain ahead of the Champions Trophy next month in England.
Sammy will still retain his post as Test and Twenty20 captain, but Bravo’s first assignment as skipper will be an extremely tough one as he will be expected to lead the West Indies to victory in the Champions Trophy over some highly skilled opposition, just like Sammy did last September during the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.
Under Sammy’s captaincy, the West Indies have only managed to win three ODI series in the last three years and West Indies chairman of the selection panel, Clyde Butts, believes that a change in leadership has been long overdue.
“Our results in Tests and T20s have been showing consistent improvement, and Sammy deserves every kudos for the work he has done in leading and moulding the team in these formats,” Butts said. “We remain confident in his leadership in these formats, and will recommend that he continues as the captain for Test and T20 cricket.
“However, our ODI results have not been as strong, and we believe that it is best that we freshen the leadership of the team in this format.”
Since taking over as ODI captain in April 2010, Sammy has led the national team to 19 victories in the 50-over format, but also to 30 losses as well.
Many cricket pundits and former players have also criticised Sammy for coming in so low down the batting order, given his power and natural hitting ability.
Meanwhile Bravo, who was shocked about the news initially, has welcomed the honour of captaining his country in ODIs and is looking forward to making an early impact by leading the side to Champions Trophy glory.
“I must say congratulations to Sammy in his leadership of the team, and I am very happy to be taking over from him,” Bravo said. “I am even happier that he remains in the team, and I am looking forward to working with him along with the team management and all the players, especially vice-captain Denesh Ramdin, Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Kieron Pollard and Marlon Samuels.”
Sammy wished Bravo the best of luck and noted that he would be there to help him every step of the way.
“I congratulate Dwayne Bravo, and give him my full support as he leads the ODI team,” Sammy said. “He can be assured of my unwavering commitment to the team and our plans to be champions of one-day cricket.”
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) have decided to leave Andre Russell, Narsingh Deonarine, Veerasammy Permaul and Kieran Powell out of the Champions Trophy squad, while Sammy, Ravi Rampaul, Samuels, Gayle, Devon Smith and 21-year-old Jason Holder have all been included.
“We have shown confidence in the players who have served well in both the batting and bowling departments, and have identified some young players such as Jason Holder and Johnson Charles who add quality to the squad,” Butts said.