Smiling Windies touch down in SL

Colombo, Sri Lanka - West Indies captain Darren Sammy is not getting carried away about his side's prospects in the ICC World Twenty20. With a number of leading T20 players at his disposal, the Windies are being touted by many as one of the leading contenders to take the crown.

Speaking at his team's arrival press conference in Colombo, Sammy was all smiles and said he believes there are a number of worthy teams at the tournament who could win the title come October 7.

The all-rounder said: "I have been asked a lot of times about how it feels to be the favourites. But I do not see us as favourites. There are a lot of good teams in this tournament. We just believe that we could come here and win. The calibre of the players we have means that once we go out there and play we can go all the way in this tournament."

Spin bowler Sunil Narine and opening batsman Chris Gayle are seen as two of the most dangerous players in the competition on the back of their exploits in the recent Indian Premier League (IPL). Sammy is delighted to have cricketers of such quality available to him.

He added: "Everybody calls Sunil as the mystery spinner. He has done well in the T20 format, especially in the IPL. I can see him playing a very big role for us in the tournament because of the pitches. It is also good thing to have the experience of Chris at the top of the order. He has contributed for us for many years."

West Indies come to the tournament on the back of a nine-day camp in Barbados, having played a couple of practice matches against the Sagicor High Performance Centre and a Combined College team.

Sammy is pleased with his team's preparation and is now looking to give the Caribbean something to smile about over the next few weeks.

"We want to put all our resources into going out and winning. Our motto for the tournament is one goal, one people and one team. To win the tournament will mean a lot to us as cricketers. Cricket in our islands has been through a lot over the last few years.

"Caribbean people are [now] pulling in one direction. The people come out and support us wherever we go. We as a team always want to keep the fans at the forefront of our mind. It is a wonderful opportunity to put a huge smile on the faces of our fans across the world for supporting us over the last few years. From speaking to everyone in the squad, I can see that they are all motivated and see this is as a massive opportunity," concluded Sammy.

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 08:17