T20 star Samuels says World Cup win a big boost for regional cricket

Star batsman Marlon Samuels believes the team’s thrilling World Cup Twenty20 win over Sri Lanka could spark a resurgence for the… cricket in the West Indies The regional side recovered from a poor start to claim their first title in eight years, silencing a 30, 000 partisan crowd at the Premadasa Stadium. Samuels, who had an impressive knock of 78 from 58 balls when everyone else seemed to struggle with the pitch, made a telling contribution.

“They labelled us as the favourites but we put it aside we knew we had to come up with the trump card, come and play our best all-round cricket,” Samuels told members of the media in a post-match interview.

“We are here today to show the world that West Indies cricket is back. We have players and good players that can bring back a lot of fans,” he added.

It was a stunning crowning achievement for the man who faced two years on the sideline after being banned by the ICC for two years in 2007, after being found guilty of giving out team information to a known bookie prior to the first ODI between the West Indies and India in Nagpur. The batsman maintained his innocence. Samuels acknowledged the adversities.

“My career has had a lot of ups and downs, lots of tough times, but I tried to deal with them in a simply way, let them past, let slide. So for me being in a situation under pressure on a cricket field is nothing compared to what I have been to off the field,” Samuels said.

“I used everything that happened to me in the tough times. I know that I’m not someone who will ever give up. I always say never die. The person that I am deep down inside is why I’m still here playing cricket.”

Samuels, who took time out to hail the fighting spirit and togetherness of the current team, dedicated the win to the region.

“We haven’t won a major title for years now so it is a great achievement for past cricketers and cricketers to come. We have a wonderful team here that has bonded together and plays like a strong unit.”



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