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Captain overload

Ex-players not in favour of three WI captains

By BY Mark Pouchet and Garth Wattley

Too many captains. Former West Indies wicketkeeper Deryck Murray  believes Denesh Ramdin should be the skipper in all three  formats  as the West Indies team is rebuilding.

The board of directors of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) approved the naming of Ramdin as the new captain of the West Indies Test team on Thursday, a recommendation made by the West Indies selection panel chaired by Clyde Butts and including Robert Haynes, Courtney Browne and head coach Ottis Gibson as members. 

Sacked West Indies Test captain Darren Sammy immediately announced his retirement from the Test team but indicated his availability for the WI ODI squad, skippered by Dwayne Bravo, and the T20 team of which Sammy is the current skipper

In a WICB media release Friday, WICB president Dave Cameron said that the Board is refocusing its attention on getting maximum performance for each format of the game and now is an ideal time to make the adjustments as they adopt the recommendations from the report done by the WICB director of cricket, Richard Pybus. 

But Murray said Ramdin’s major advantage in leading in all three formats is that he is the undisputed wicketkeeper in the region.

“I have seen other countries are doing it (having different captains for different formats),” but I don’t like it. I think I would prefer there to be one captain for all formats because when you look at it, most of the players make up the majority of the three WI teams, (T20, ODI and Test) and so with a team that is not that highly rated as the West Indies, the situation of one captain for all formats would bring some stability and consistency in terms of the team philosophy and leadership,” Murray said. 

Murray also expressed surprise at the selection of the current Trinidad and Tobago wicketkeeper but said he is fully behind Ramdin who he deemed more than capable of performing the skipper’s duties.

“I was kind of surprised but I guess we should have taken some insight from the changes being made previously when  (Darren) Sammy was  removed as the captain of the ODI  team, that more changes were afoot. But by his performances,  Ramdin has distinguished himself as the best wicketkeeper , the undisputed wicketkeeper in the West Indies and thus has solidified and strengthened his position on the team . He is now in a better position to communicate, give instruction and guidance to the other players from a position of strength,” Murray said.

Meanwhile another former WI gloveman and chairman of selectors Michael Findlay described Ramdin as “the logical choice,” to replace Sammy.

However, he was not certain that this stage that the change would be one for the better.

“In fairness to the selectors, they are in a desperate situation now,” Findlay told the Sunday Express yesterday. “Whether it is the right time or not depends on what happens form here on.  Sammy was put as captain with the hope that he would improve the performance of the team. It materialised very briefly. The move (to replace him) is a hope rather than anything else, because let’s face it, performance is what is important and the West Indies team has not been performing.”

However, he too is not a fan of having three different West Indies skippers.

“I think the two captain s are ideal,” he said,  one for Twenty20s and One-days and one for the Tests. If you have three captains it’s always difficult  because they have different ways of leading, so you will always be adjusting to the leadership on the field of three people.

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