Sunday, January 21, 2018

Sammy: Last chance for Sri Lanka stalwarts

 West Indies captain Darren Sammy on Thursday rued his side’s missed chance at retaining their World Twenty20 title but tossed up the idea that the manner of defeat may have been part of a divine plan. 

The Caribbean side went down to Sri Lanka by 27 runs under the Duckworth/Lewis system, after a fearsome rain and hail storm washed out the first semi-final. 

West Indies were 80 for four in the 14th over, needing to reach 161 for victory but were well behind their DL par score of 108 when the match ended. With Sri Lankan legends Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara set to quit T20 Internationals following this tournament, Sammy suggested the washout may have been divinely designed to allow them to retire with a World Cup triumph.

“We’re a praying team. God normally answers our prayers. [There were] two gentlemen who have played for Sri Lanka and have given a lot, not only to Sri Lanka but to cricket on a whole, so I guess the Almighty wants them to leave on a high,” Sammy mused. 

“They have one more game to try and win a World Cup and leave on a high. Probably that’s the reason why God put a hand in this match. I’m sure I will have another shot at [winning] the T20 World Cup and we look forward to winning it again in the near future.”

Both Jayawardene and Sangakkara have experienced repeated disappointment in recent years as Sri Lanka have found themselves on the losing end of limited overs finals. 

They lost the final of the 2012 T20 World Cup to West Indies, and were also on the losing end of the 2009 final in London. 

They were also beaten in the final of the 50-over World Cup by India                  in India 2011 and went down in the 2007 edition in the Caribbean to Australia.