Sammy hails battling Windies
West Indies skipper Darren Sammy lauded his players’ “never-say-die” attitude following England’s victory in the first Investec Test.
The tourists gave Andrew Strauss’ side frights aplenty at Lord’s, lastly this morning when Kemar Roach and Shannon Gabriel claimed early wickets.
Those left the home side 57 for four in pursuit of 191, yet Alastair Cook and Ian Bell struck 79 and an unbeaten 63 respectively to see England over the line.
That West Indies even took the game to a fifth and final day represented an achievement, however.
It looked as though it may be over in three when they were reduced to 36 for three in their second innings having conceded a first-innings deficit of 155.
“We are quite pleased,” Sammy admitted. “We showed never-say-die attitude and there were some good performances. We will take these positives into the next Test.
“No-one gave us a chance and we kept coming back. That shows team spirit.”
While he was understandably happy with his troops, Sammy was left rueing the moments that cost his side, the main one being the aforementioned collapse on day three.
After Adrian Barath fell to a beauty, Kieran Powell played a loose shot to depart and Kirk Edwards was run out for none following mis-communication with Darren Bravo.
“The bad hour’s here and there keep on happening. Hopefully, in future, we can just have a bad 20 minutes,” he joked.
“But you have got to be at your best all the time against the world’s number-one side.”
Having slipped to 65 for four second time round, West Indies showed what they were capable of. Their renaissance was led by Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Marlon Samuels, who struck 91 and 86 respectively.
The former’s effort followed up a first-innings 87 not out, leading to further questions of whether he should be moved up the order from number five.
“Shiv is an experienced player and he does an excellent job at number five,” added Sammy. “He continues to do that.
“He probably could bat at three, but there might be a situation where he gets out quickly and it is a different story. The other batsmen have to stand up, bat and set a platform.”
The West Indies’ other outstanding performer was Roach, who claimed six wickets in the match. He looked particularly menacing last evening and this morning - only to then appear injured.
Sammy allayed any fears over his fitness, though.
“Kemar is good,” said Sammy. “As a small fella bowling so fast, he gets aches and pains. He has a dodgy ankle, but will get some treatment and should be ready for next Test.”