Sammy keen to nail down specific roles

West Indies have assembled a “dangerous” batting lineup and just need to assign specific roles for their bowlers to be fully prepared for the home T20 World Cup in June, head coach Daren Sammy said.

Cricket’s shortest format remains a strong suit for West Indies, who won both their T20 World Cup titles in 2012 and 2016 under Sammy’s captaincy.

They won T20 series against South Africa, India and England in 2023 and posted three successive 200-plus scores in Australia earlier this year despite losing the series 2-1.

“It sends a strong message to the world from our batting group that West Indies is a dangerous force,” Sammy said in a Cricket West Indies video interview.

“I’ve said it before to my guys. I said to them, ‘I’ve seen this team before, this type of power, the explosiveness’. It was a team that I captained before …

“So to see it eight years since I left the game… man, it’s exciting times for us in the World Cup coming in June.”

Death-overs bowling remains an issue with the team, though, and Sammy said they were finalising the candidates for various bowling roles.

Fast bowler Shamar Joseph is in Sammy’s thinking for the World Cup after the 24-year-old’s headline-grabbing debut in a test series Australia earlier this year.

Joseph’s exploits were widely celebrated across the region and winning the World Cup on home soil would help sustain that interest in the game, said Sammy.

“When West Indies do well, there’s a buzz,” he said.

“You saw Shamar Joseph’s exploits in Australia and how it created a buzz in the Caribbean. So for us, and for me as a coach, to lift the silverware, it will mean everything.”

Rovman Powell and his men will begin their World Cup campaign with a Group C match against Papua New Guinea in Providence, Guyana. – Reuters

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