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Sammy: Hard work not over


GARTH WATTLEY in Jamaica

Sammy: Hard work not over

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While he savoured only his second Test series victory as West Indies captain yesterday, Darren Sammy acknowledged that the hard work for his team is far from over.
For the first time since the 2002 series in Bangladesh, the West Indies completed a 2-0 series sweep of opponents.
That it was done this time against a side ranked above them in the ICC rankings – seventh placed New Zealand – would have been even more pleasing to the captain.
But following Sunday’s five-wicket win over the Black Caps at Sabina Park, Sammy stressed the need for the Windies to keep working.
“The last year or two has been really tough for us,” he said.
“We are going to enjoy this, definitely celebrate it, but that doesn’t mean we [are] where we want to be.
“Like I said, continuous hard work . . .  and I know coach Gibson is really big on working hard and the guys are responding.”
The 2-0 win followed 2-0 and 4-1 triumphs over the tourists in the two-match Twenty20 and five-game One-day International series.
The emphatic nature of the wins raised questions over the strength of the opposition and the real value of the victory. But Sammy would take nothing away from his side.
Not pushovers
“They were not pushovers,”he said of the Black Caps.
“The result might not agree with me but there were times in the games when we really had to work hard for everything. . . .
“We just played a brand of cricket that we wanted to display out there.”
Asked what accounted for the better showing, Sammy said: “The guys are more aware of what’s required to win. I think we are giving more thought to the way we go out and play, to the team plans.
“Obviously we have guys in the team who have been working really hard throughout the year and they are just reaping the rewards of their hard work.”
One of those “guys” was Man Of The Match Marlon Samuels, who made 123 and 52 in a low-scoring affair.
Sammy identified the player’s “mental toughness” as the key to his present form.
“We know Marlon has always been a classy player. But the way he’s managed to control his aggression and build his innings [has been key],” Sammy said.
“He respects the start of his innings. He would graft and make sure he gives himself a start and once he does that, we see how freely he can play.”
West Indies’ next assignment will be the World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka next month. And Sammy hopes to take the winning feeling over to Asia as well.
“We have a good bunch of guys in the set-up. We are just looking to win the tournament. But it’s all about being consistent.
“We’ve gotten the feeling of what it is to win and I know everyone in the dressing room likes that feeling, so it’s something we want to keep around the dressing room, but it’s gonna be continuous hard work.” (Trinidad Express)

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