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Sammy pleased with Windies’ improved bowling
COLOMBO—West Indies cricket captain Darren Sammy says he is pleased with the “much improved performance” of his bowlers following their win over Ireland in the ICC Twenty/20 tournament in Sri Lanka Monday. Windies bowlers kept the Irish in check to limit them to just 129-6 off 19 overs in a match cut short by the inclement weather.
Sammy had special praise for Ravi Rampaul, who was good at the start of the innings and at the death, and Chris Gayle, who had his first bowl in international cricket this year. “I back our bowlers to come good. This was a much improved performance from the last game (against Australia),” said Sammy.
“Big up to Ravi the way he came back in this game. He must have been a little down on confidence but the mettle he showed out there tonight is good for us going forward in the tournament.” The Windies were accurate from the very first ball when Fidel Edwards knocked over the stumps of William Porterfield at the R Premadasa Stadium. Chris Gayle led the bowling with two wickets with his quick off-spin and brought the crowd to life with the new “Gangnam Style” dance.
Fidel Edwards, Rampaul, Sammy and spinner Sunil Narine all picked up a wicket to help maintain the pressure. “To have Gayle bowling in international cricket for the first time after a while, came out good for us, so we have a lot of bowling options and I back my bowlers to restrict teams,” Sammy said. West Indies never got a chance to start their reply as the heavy showers forced the officials to call off the match.
The result allowed West Indies to qualify for the Super Eights stage—as they finished the preliminary round second behind Australia in Group B. “The first goal was to reach the Super Eights and we have achieved that. “Now we need to start off very well against England,” said Sammy. “This is the business end of the tournament and we mean business. We have not played a lot, we have not played a full match, so we have a lot left in us.”
The Caribbean side will travel to Kandy where they will play all three Super Eights matches at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium. They will have a full training session today before their first match is against defending champions England tomorrow. First ball is 7.30 pm (10 am Eastern Caribbean Time/9 am Jamaica Time). “We just believe we can go out there and win,” added Sammy. “Obviously, England are the defending champions and we don’t want to underestimate anybody. We just need to go out there and bowl properly and execute our plans.”
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