West Indies all-rounder Darren Sammy has retired from Test cricket.
Sammy is reported to have made the decision after he lost the captaincy to Denesh Ramdin. The announcement brings the curtain down on a four-year captaincy in the longer format of the game, though he will remain with the national side for limited overs cricket, including as Twenty-20 skipper.
It has admittedly been something of a fairly unremarkable spell under his captaincy, as the West Indies’ Test victories have primarily been against mediocre opposition such as Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and New Zealand. He has only steered his men to eight victories in that time, while losing 12 and drawing 10.
They will face New Zealand again on June 8, when the two sides begin a three-Test series starting in Jamaica, led by Ramdin. However, it leaves the Windies in the somewhat unusual situation of having three different captains across Tests, T20s and ODIs, with Dwayne Bravo taking charge for the latter. Ramdin has almost double Sammy’s Test experience, having played in 56 Tests, and certainly has more experience in captaining sides.
Sammy certainly deserves to retain his T20 captaincy, having led his troops to the World Cup semi-final before losing out to eventual winners Sri Lanka. His side also looked impressive against England when the two teams faced earlier this year, although they were admittedly facing bedraggled opposition after the Three Lions’ disastrous winter.
The 30-year-old told NDTV that now he has been replaced as captain, he is “no longer needed” in the Test side at all. It remains to be seen whether that is the case, though, as he captained the side in thirty of his thirty-eight caps. Nonetheless, Sammy has not plucked that feeling out of nowhere, having held talks with the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), who appear to have informed him that his Test days are over. He insists he bears no grudges, however, and is proud of his time in the role, where the St Lucian feels he was able to unite his team mates under the one flag.
With his days as captain behind him, Sammy will now be able to focus more fully on the IPL, where he plays for Sunrisers Hyderabad. They are currently competing with Delhi Daredevils, captained by Kevin Pietersen, for whom Sammy almost signed earlier this year after becoming the subject of a bidding war.
The Windies Test fixtures against New Zealand mean that Sammy will not return until at least July, when they start their T20s against the Black Caps before another home series against Bangladesh.
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