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Marlon Samuels Unfazed About Milestones

Marlon Samuels in action during the second Test against England in Grenada.
Marlon Samuels in action during the second Test against England in Grenada.
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West Indies batsman Marlon Samuels, who is nearing his seventh Test hundred during the ongoing second game against England in Grenada, seems unfazed by milestones.

Having battled his way to a solid unbeaten 94 on a rain-hit first day under testing conditions, Samuels preferred to look at the larger picture of the game.

"Getting to a hundred is a milestone but putting the team in a good position is more important,” said Samuels.

"I’ll have to take my guard again when I get to a hundred because I am looking to carry on for as long as possible for the team.”

After being put into bat under murky overhead conditions, West Indies were 28 for two when Samuels walked in after James Anderson and Chris Jordan had removed the opening batsmen.

Elaborating on the adversity of the conditions, Samuels opined that his success in English conditions helped him to counter the swinging ball.

“Looking upstairs and it was overcast in the morning, the ball was swinging around.

“It was like English conditions and I have done well in England, so used the English approach by leaving a lot of balls alone.“

Samuels hid his natural flair for a more gritty approach as he consumed 186 deliveries batting for more than four hours at the crease.

“Idea was to let the ball come to me on a slow track with the ball moving around.”

West Indies were tottering at one stage as they slipped to 74 for four which included the key wicket of the usual solid Shivnarine Chanderpaul for one.

However, Samuels held one end up as he anchored the innings till stumps to ensure that the hosts were still in the game albeit by a small margin.

Always up for a challenge, the 34-year-old stated that he was motivated by difficult situations which enabled him to raise his game.

“I am a person who likes a battle.

“Going out there to bat knowing that the conditions are difficult with the English bowlers on the attack motivated me to dig deep and come up with a solid approach.

“Intent was to bat the entire day and put West Indies in a very good position.”

Despite watching the wickets fall at the other end, Samuels remained unhurried as he took his own time to settle down eventually blunting out the English bowlers.

West Indies’ revival was built around two partnerships that Samuels had – a 55-run stand with Jermaine Blackwood (26) and an unbeaten 59-run stand with skipper Denesh Ramdin (6 not out).

“When wickets were falling, I was trying to keep myself patient with a bit of aggression.

“It paid off for me. I went back into my shell and started leaving balls.

“Ramdin is there and hopefully we can get a good partnership tomorrow.”

Samuels has been in good form over the last five months compiling 418 runs from seven innings at an average of 59.71 with a century and two fifties including his knock on Tuesday.

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