Darren Sammy hails brilliant West Indies comeback against Australia
West Indies Twenty20 International captain Darren Sammy lauded his team's fight back as they came from behind to register a three-wicket win against Australia in the warm-up match of the ICC World T20 in Kolkata.
Batting first, Australia posted a target of 162 runs riding on the back of a tremendous 39-ball knock of 60 runs from Shane Watson.
Josh Hazlewood took a hat-trick as West Indies were rattled early in the chase and lost half their side with just 49 runs on the board.
However, Sammy led the West Indies fightback with a 28-ball fifty and secured a three-wicket win for his team along with cameos from Andre Russell and Carlos Brathwaite.
Speaking about the late fight back from West Indies, Sammy stated that the team backed the lower order to chase down the target and added that it was important to keep calm.
“(I was looking to) just bat out the overs.
“They started off really well. Those last four overs, with the power we have, myself, Carlos (Brathwaite) and even Ashley (Nurse), we backed ourselves to chase 10 to 15 runs an over.
“It was about staying calm and making sure that I get the job done for the team.
“At the end, any win against Australia is always great.”
Even with the ball, West Indies managed to restrict Australia to 161 for nine in 20 overs after they were placed at 106 for two following the dismissal of Shane Watson in the 12th over.
The architects of the Australian collapse were Dwayne Bravo and Sulieman Benn, who took seven wickets between them.
Sammy praised the efforts of Bravo to restrict Australia and also said that it was tough to get the shots away once the ball got old.
“Today we had Dwayne Bravo, who is really experienced death bowler.
“He showed all his skills today.
“They started off with a flier but as soon as the ball got a little older, it was more difficult to hit the ball.
“That was a brilliant comeback from the bowlers.
“The way the second half of the (batting) order chased down that total was really good.”
So far in the warm-up matches of the ICC World T20, West Indies lost a game against India, where their batting order failed while chasing a mammoth target of 186 runs.
Identifying the areas where West Indies needed to improve, Sammy wanted the team to string together a complete performance instead of doing well in bits and pieces.
“So far we have not played a complete game.
“If the top batted well, we have not batted well in the end.
“If we started off well with the ball, we have not managed to finish well.
“So, it is about putting the pieces together – the powerplay, the middle overs and the death overs as well.
“Each player being responsible for the section of the game which they are called upon to play.”
West Indies played both their warm-up games at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata and the crowds turned up in significant numbers despite coming out to witness the practice matches.
Acknowledging that cricket is more like a religion in India, Sammy is quite excited to play the ICC World T20 in front of full stadiums, especially at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
“It says that you are playing cricket in India.
“It is a place where we all know cricket is a religion.
“The fact that we were not even playing against India and we had so many people here.
“It is exciting times and I am looking forward to playing at the Wankhede (stadium) in front of a full house.”
Having completed their warm-up fixtures in the tournament, West Indies will now head to Mumbai where they take on England on 16th March in their first game in the Super 10 stages of the tournament.
© Cricket World 2016