‘Everyone who plays regional cricket is available’ – Daren Sammy on reintegrating seasoned big-hitters with WI setup

May 27, 2023

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Daren Sammy receives Sitara-e-Pakistan (Photo Source: Instagram/darenswamy)

West Indies’ newly-appointed white-ball coach Daren Sammy stated that he is working on reintegrating the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Evin Lewis, Andre Russell and Sunil Narine with the national setup. The two-time T20 World Cup-winning captain in his first press conference as the white-ball coach of the team, expressed that he had held conversations with the aforementioned players regarding a potential return to the national team.

Sammy stated that he wanted to understand Shimron Hetmyer and Evin Lewis’ mindset, their plans, and if the latter could fit in the setup, adding that communication among the members would play a vital role in serving the purpose.

“Well, first thing I’d like to make it known is everyone who plays regional cricket is available or is indicating that they’re available for West Indies selection. I’ve had conversations with both Hetty [Shimron Hetmyer] and Evin Lewis. Having played not too long ago and understanding the complaints of players – and the lack thereof of communication – I think it’s important for us to communicate,” Sammy was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

“It sounds simple but I understand that just clear communication makes the process better and it gives you a better understanding. I must tell you that the feedback has been positive and I’ve also reached out to guys like Andre Russell. I’ve reached out to Sunil Narine and all these guys, too, to hear what their thoughts are,” he added.

Hurts fans to see Hetmyer perform elsewhere and not in the Maroon: Sammy

Sammy further voiced that fans felt dejected with some of the players performing exceedingly well in franchise cricket, and not featuring for the national team on a regular basis, as he cited Hetmyer’s recent exploits to strengthen his claims. Notably, Hetmyer was at his explosive best for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2023 wherein he collected 300 runs in 14 appearances at a solid average of 37.50.

“It takes honest and mature conversations, which is one I’m not afraid to have with the players. I’m encouraged by the discussions that we’ve had when it comes to West Indies cricket, outlining clear plans as to how we reintegrate because these players…. look at the caliber of Shimron…I’m sure it hurts fans to see him perform elsewhere and not in the maroon,” told Sammy.

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