BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, May 9, CMC – West Indies selectors have ended Darren Sammy’s near four-year reign as captain and appointed wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin in his place for the upcoming New Zealand series.
The announcement was made by the West Indies Cricket Board via the online social network Twitter.
“Denesh Ramdin, the Wicket-keeper/Batsman, has been named new Test Match Captain of the West Indies Team. Congrats to him on the appointment,” the tweet read.
“The WICB also thanks Darren Sammy for his time at the helm as Test Match Captain from November 2010. He will remain as T20 Captain,” the Board added in another tweet.
New Zealand arrive later this month for a three-Test series, starting in Jamaica on June 8, and Ramdin said he was looking forward to the challenge before him.
“It is an honour to be named as captain of the West Indies Test team. This is a huge opportunity and as a unit we are capable of representing the people of the West Indies,” Ramdin said.
“It is something very special to represent the people of the West Indies and to be named to the lead the Test team and chart the course forward is humbling and extra special.
“I thank the WICB for affording me this incredible opportunity and I also thank the TTCB for the opportunity to lead Trinidad & Tobago.”
It is the second time within the last year that Sammy has been relieved of his duties, following the appointment of Dwayne Bravo as One-Day captain last May.
West Indies Cricket Board president Dave Cameron thanked Sammy for his commitment during his tenure.
“We thank Darren for his energetic and resolute leadership over the past four years and we continue to see his role as the Twenty20 captain as a critical one. The Board has approved the recommendation of the Selection Panel,” Cameron said.
“We wish Denesh consistent success and commit the full support of the Board as he takes on the mammoth responsibility of Test captain.”
The 29-year-old Ramdin is vastly experienced, having played 56 Tests, 109 One-Day Internationals and 46 Twenty20s, and has had several stints as West Indies vice-captain.
He has led West Indies in a single ODI – against Bangladesh three years ago in Dhaka – and in three Twenty20s but has never captained in a Test.
Ramdin, the current Trinidad and Tobago skipper, is no stranger to controversy, however. Only last year during the Champions Trophy in England, he was fined his full match fee and suspended for two one-day matches for wrongly claiming a catch against Pakistan.
In 2012 during the Test tour of England, he was fined 20 per cent of his match fee for brandishing a hand-written sign in a taunt aimed at media pundit, West Indies legend, Sir Viv Richards, after scoring a century at Edgbaston.
Ramdin was also strangely overlooked for the ODI captaincy when Bravo was suspended for a game during the Celkon Mobile Cup last year, and Kieron Pollard was asked to lead the side.
Sammy, meanwhile, led West Indies in 30 of his 38 Tests, managing eight wins, 12 losses and ten draws. He has often been credited with uniting the squad and returning stability and discipline but his role as captain, which had always been under the microscope, came under new scrutiny following disastrous results on the Test tours of India and New Zealand last year.