West Indies head coach Phil Simmons admits to some disappointment with a draw in the final four-day tour game against Prime Minister’s XI at Manuka Oval but believes it has been adequate preparation ahead of the two-Test series against Australia, which begins next week.

Chasing a total of 309 runs for victory, on the final day, a win seemed possible when the team entered the final break at 221 for 5, needing another 88 runs to claim victory.

 The West Indies had a less-than-ideal start to the final session, however, and found themselves reduced to 273 for 8, following the dismissals of Roston Chase, Alzarri Joseph, and then Kemar Roach, in fairly quick succession.

 Raymon Reifer and Joshua Da Silva then combined to help West Indies fight for the draw, playing out the final eight overs to finish on 277 for 8.

“I’m not happy with the results, we should have won it,” Simmons said following the final ball.

“We have a few misplaced wickets in the middle, while we were controlling the game, so that was a disappointment, but at the end of the day the way how the guys fought is always greatly encouraging,” he added.

With the players getting plenty of opportunities to bat and bowl in pressure situations, Simmons was though satisfied with what the tour match provided, ahead of a difficult series.

“The two games have been very good for us, mind you, flattish wickets, but the bowlers got the overs in their legs and the batsmen got their time at the crease so that was good for us.”

 Cricket West Indies (CWI) has confirmed that as reported by Sportsmax.TV earlier Monday, Phil Simmons will be stepping down from his role as Head Coach of the West Indies Men’s team following the team’s exit from the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup being played in Australia.

His last assignment will be the upcoming two-Test series against Australia from 30 November to 12 December.

“I acknowledge that it’s not just the team that is hurting but the proud nations we represent as well," said Simmons on his resignation.

"It’s disappointing and heart wrenching but we just didn’t turn up. We weren’t good enough and we now have to watch a tournament play-out without our involvement. It's unfathomable and for that I deeply apologize to our fans and followers.

“From a personal perspective this is not a knee jerk reaction, but a move I have been considering for some time and now is the time to make public that I will step down as West Indies Head Coach at the end of the Test series against Australia. It is earlier than hoped for, but I will now focus my energies in Australia on continuing to build on the excellent progress the Test team has made. Of course, as the President has pointed out, we will also carry out the necessary review into our World Cup campaign.

“I must say I have enjoyed aspects of the unique challenge that being West Indies Head Coach provides and the unwavering support of my Management Team. There remain some exceptional individuals within CWI who I firmly believe will continue to work in the best interests of West Indies cricket.”

CWI President Ricky Skerritt thanked Simmons for his service.

“On behalf of CWI I want to thank Phil for his hard work and dedication to West Indies cricket, most recently in his role as head coach," the CWI president said.

"Phil is a proud West Indian, with high ideals and has never lacked motivation in guiding our younger players on and off the field of play. He brought valuable experience and stability at a very important period of transformation, including the most challenging environment of the COVID-19 pandemic. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Simmons was at the helm in 2016 when West Indies won their second ICC Men’s T20 World Cup title defeating England at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Earlier this year he guided the team’s fortunes in their hard-fought 1-0 Test series win over England on home soil to capture the Richards-Botham Trophy and in June a Test series victory against Bangladesh in their last outing.

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As the fallout begins regarding the West Indies’ disastrous performance at the 2022 ICC T20 World Cup in Australia, Phil Simmons, head coach of the two-time world champions, has reportedly tendered his resignation, Sportsmax.TV sources have indicated. Members of the CWI board are said to have convened an emergency meeting over the matter.

Simmons tendered his resignation on Saturday, sources said, and it is expected to take effect in January 2023 as his contract requires that he give his employers 12 weeks’ notice.

The timing of the resignation comes at an inopportune time as the West Indies are scheduled to Australia for two Tests in late November. The team begins with a four-day pink-ball match from November 23-26. The first Test bowls off on November 30.

Simmons was appointed head coach in 2019 shortly after Ricky Skerritt and Dr Kishore Shallow came to power at Cricket West Indies Annual General Meeting in Kingston. Since then, West Indies have fared poorly in international competition.

The team is currently ranked eighth in Tests, ninth in ODIs and seventh in T20I.

At the 2021 ICC T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates, the West Indies won one match before bowing out of the competition. Then just last week, at the 2022 competition, the West Indies put in an even more disappointing performance, failing to get to the Super 12 round for the first time ever having lost their opening match by 42 runs to Scotland before being dumped out of the competition following a humiliating nine-wicket loss to Ireland in the qualifying round.

Following the nine-wicket drubbing, the CWI boss laid the blame squarely at the feet at the batsmen while promising to conduct a thorough investigation into the reasons behind the poor showing.

"Untimely shot selections seem to be deeply embedded in the T20 batting culture of our senior team," the CWI president said.

Australian captain and great Ricky Ponting called the showing “embarrassing”.

 

West Indies coach Phil Simmons insists the team will have to make do with the players that are available as the unit continues to suffer the absence of a few high-profile players.

Chief among that group is Sunil Narine, who was once ranked as the world’s number one spinner and a regular feature in T20 leagues around the world.  Narine has not appeared in a match for the team since 2019.  Also missing are the likes of big-hitter Andre Russell and Evin Lewis who have not featured for the team since last year’s T20 World Cup.  Russell has been unavailable while Lewis has not taken the required fitness tests to be included in the team selections.

All three players have, however, continued to take part in the lucrative T20 leagues around the world, despite not playing for the regional team since last year's World cup debacle.  Simmons admits that not having all the players the team would love to have available is not the ideal scenario but expects the cricketers to be motivated to play for the West Indies.

“I’ve made it a point of duty, anywhere that I’ve gone, I don’t think you should be begging people to play for their country,” Simmons told members of the media on Tuesday.

“I think if you want to represent the West Indies, you make yourself available for West Indies cricket,” he added.

“Life has changed in that people have the opportunity to go to different places, if they pick that over the West Indies then that’s how it is, but it doesn’t make sense me going out there and begging you to play for the West Indies because I don’t know if you will come with as strong a heart as I want you to have.”

The West Indies are currently trailing New Zealand 1-0 in the ongoing T20 series.

 

West Indies coach Phil Simmons has backed the One Day International (ODI) team to eventually pull things together after a number of discouraging recent results.

The ODI format has been the team’s least productive over the last few years, having won just 9 of 51 series played in the last 10 years, which amounts to a 17 percent win rate.  In the last three consecutive series, the regional team has failed to win a game after being swept aside 3-0 by Pakistan, Bangladesh, and India.

In three of the last four matches against Bangladesh and then India, however, the team at least managed to put in strong batting performances despite losing the match.

“The first two games we batted the 50 overs and looked like we understood what batting 50 overs was about.  I think that’s a step forward and we will just have to keep trying to move forward with that,” Simmons told members of the media on Wednesday.

“The bowlers have been doing it in a few games and not the batsmen.  Now it’s turned around.  So, we’ve got to get everything together.  The one plus is that the fielding keeps getting better and better, so we have to put everything together,” he added.

“Everything takes time, the guys have been playing together more and more and we are having a squad play together more and more.  That’s what happened with the Test team, the guys played together for a while and now we are seeing the fruits of that.  Let’s see what happens with the ODI team.”

 

West Indies coach Phil Simmons was satisfied the team was on the right path in the first T20 international against Bangladesh before the match was called off due to rain.

Pace bowler Romario Sheperd had captured 3 for 21 and led the way for the West Indies who reduced Bangladesh to 105 for 8 from 13 overs after the match had been reduced to 14 for each team after early showers delayed the start of play.

When play did begin, Munim Shahriar was dismissed in the first over, putting Bangladesh immediately on the back foot at 2 for 1.  From there the team lost wickets at regular intervals, with Shakib Al Hasan providing the most resistance with 29 from 15.

Hayden Walsh Jr was the next most successful bowler for the West Indies after taking 2 for 24.

    “I think we are getting to where we want to be.  The aggression was there, the guys ran in and hit the wicket.  They made Bangladesh play,” Simmons said after the match was called off.

“We took four wickets early on and I think we did the right things today.  In the field we took all the catches that came to us, so we did all the right things.”

The teams are scheduled to play the second match of the series on Sunday at the Windsor Park Stadium in Dominica.

West Indies coach Phil Simmonds expects improved bowling performances from spinner Gudakesh Motie in the future after a fruitless debut with the ball against Bangladesh last week.

Overall, the spinner ended the opening Test with no wicket from 16 overs and conceded 43 runs.  The debut stood a far way from his performances in the West Indies Championship this season where he claimed 17 wickets in five matches, earning the attention of the West Indies selectors.

The 27-year-old did, however, make some sort of contribution with the bat after making 23 unbeaten from 21 deliveries, in the first innings.

“He scored a 100 in the Championship, so he can hold the bat and he can score like we saw but his bowling is going to improve,” Simmons said, following the first Test.

“I think when you play in your first Test match there’s always nerves, there’s a lot of things, but his bowling is going to improve,” he added.

While, for the most part, it was the pace bowlers who dominated affairs, Bangladesh spinner Mehidy Hasan claimed 4 for 59 in the first innings to put some pressure on the West Indies batting line-up.  West Indies and Bangladesh will face off in the second and final Test on Friday.

West Indies Head Coach Phil Simmons has praised Captain Kraigg Brathwaite’s determination after the team’s seven-wicket victory over Bangladesh in the first Test at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on Sunday.

In the first innings, Brathwaite made 94 off 268 balls, batting for 400 minutes in the process.

“There’s not much to tell as a batsman because I think everybody’s seen his determination and unique style,” Simmons said in an interview after the match.

“He doesn’t have a problem being there for five days and doing his job which is unique because a lot of batsmen nowadays want to play shots and be done with it but, from his point of view, he wants to be there all the time for his team and that rolls into the captaincy,” he added.

Since being named permanent Captain in March 2021, Brathwaite has led the team to a series win against England and drawn series against Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

“He seems to be growing into the role as we go along,” Simmons said.

“He’s not loud but the players know what he wants in his unique way. He makes them understand what he wants from them,” he added.

Brathwaite’s next assignment will be to lead the team to victory in the second test against Bangladesh which begins on Friday at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground in St. Lucia.

 

West Indies head coach Phil Simmons insists he understands and respects the decision of recently retired captain Kieron Pollard but insists the player’s passion and desire will be sorely missed.

After nearly 16-years representing the regional team and three years in charge of both the One Day International (ODI) and T20 squads, the 34-year-old Pollard announced his decision to step away from international cricket last week.

“Skipper it is sad to see you retire from the maroon shirt so early…I completely understand,” Simmons said, addressing the issue via Facebook.

“Your ability to give players your backing and trust to deliver and your strong leadership both on and off the field was a joy to work with,” he added.

Pollard took charge of both squads in 2019 and experienced mixed fortunes during his tenure.  The T20 squad lost 21 of 39 matches and had a disastrous defense of its World Cup title.  The ODI squad on the other hand fared better, winning 13 and losing 11 of 21 matches played.  Still, Simmons hailed Pollard as a positive force for pushing players to reach their full potential and having a genuine desire to see the team do well.

“Your passion for pushing players to build on skills and knowledge of the game and more. Your unwillingness to settle for mediocrity was a pleasure to work with,” Simmons said.

“Your undoubted passion for the game and especially the Maroon Shirt together with your desire to bring success to the West Indies cricket team henceforth Cricket West Indies will be missed. You will be missed.”

Newcomers Nyeem Young and Keacy Carty have been named among 16 players selected by Cricket West Indies (CWI) for a white-ball camp to be held at the Coolidge Cricket Ground from Thursday, March 31 to Wednesday, April 13.

Young was a member of the West Indies Rising Stars squad at the 2020 ICC U19 World Cup and has also played for Barbados Royals in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL). Carty, meanwhile, has been a consistent member of the Leeward Islands Hurricanes squad for the last five years. He was Player of the Match in the final of the 2016 ICC U19 World Cup won by the West Indies.

West Indies Head Coach Phil Simmons outlined that the camp will focus on improving skill sets as the West Indies look ahead to two major global events over the next two years – the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia later this year and the 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup to be played in India.

“The camp will be a chance for us to do some work with players in the white-ball formats, players who might have a chance to play in the coming white-ball teams later this year,” Simmons said.

“The most important thing is that we will be doing things in the camp that we have not been doing well, such as rotating strike, sweeping, and playing spin better. It’s about working on things that we’re not 100 per cent at yet. We have several players at IPL who will be working at their games as well, so we’re working with the players here to make sure they keep up the standard and improve.”

Simmons also weighed in on the selection of Carty and Young for the camp.

Keacy Carty was a reserve for the team which toured India in February. If there was any reason why players couldn’t go, he was the next batsman in line. He is one of the players we have looked at before,” Simmons revealed.

“Nyeem Young is one of the potentially good young all-rounders we have around the Caribbean, so we just want to bring them in and get them to understand what we expect of them if they get to that level.”

In late May, the West Indies travel to The Netherlands for the first-ever three-match One Day International Series between the two teams, to be followed by the rescheduled three-match ODI Series against Pakistan which was postponed in December.

These fixtures form part of the ICC ODI Super League, where teams will have the opportunity to secure points to try and secure one of the top seven places, excluding hosts India, to gain automatic qualification for the 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.

West Indies will then be hosting tours by Bangladesh, India and New Zealand with all three series featuring white-ball matches. Details of these tours will be announced in the coming weeks.

Players for white-ball camp: Nkrumah Bonner, Darren Bravo, Shamarh Brooks, Keacy Carty, Roston Chase, Justin Greaves, Chandrapaul Hemraj, Shai Hope, Brandon King, Kjorn Ottley, Keemo Paul, Anderson Phillip, Raymon Reifer, Nial Smith, Devon Thomas and Nyeem Young.

 

Cricket West Indies (CWI) has lauded the West Indies team on their win over England in the Apex Test Series.

Tuesday marks the start of the three-Test Apex series between the West Indies and England. The visitors have not won a Test series in the Caribbean since their3-0 triumph in 2004, the same series in which Brian Lara scored a world record 400 not out in the fourth Test at the Antigua Recreation Ground.

In 2019, when the teams last met in the Caribbean, the hosts secured a 2-1 series win and West Indies head coach Phil Simmons wants his team to keep the trend alive.

“We’re looking to play the cricket that we know will put us in a position to win the series. We’re trying to make sure we’re ready for everything England can throw at us,” the Trinidadian head coach said during a pre-match press conference on Monday while indicating that it will critical for the hosts to build strong opening partnerships when they bat.

In that series, Captain Kraigg Brathwaite and John Campbell shared opening stands of 53, 52, 70, 17 not out, 57 and five and they will once again be entrusted with the responsibility.

“The last time we beat England here, the opening pair was Kraigg and John Campbell. Let’s hope that’s a good omen for us because they gave the team some good starts. We’ve been talking about getting a good start and making sure that the top four put things together and not leave it for the middle and lower order,” Simmons said.

“That’s been the focus of our camp leading up to this series. We need batsmen to bat long so the bowlers can have something to work with and I think the camp went well so I expect good things from them.”

The absence of James Anderson and Stuart Broad from the England team has been a big talking point ever since their squad was announced, but Simmons says he is more interested in who they do have.

“We keep harping on no Broad and Anderson but when you don’t have the experience, you have young players who are hungry to make their name and that is something that you have to guard against too. They have quality bowlers who we still have to bat well against,” he said.

Simmons also spoke about the importance of having one specialist spinner in their squad, Veerasammy Permaul.

“Your spinner, at least in the first couple of days, will always play that holding role. Permaul has been bowling really well so, hopefully, by the time we get to the fourth day he will come into play and possibly be a match-winner for us,” Simmons said.

Simmons also mentioned the conditions he expects at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium on Tuesday.

“It looks like it’s going to be a good wicket. We’re going to have to work hard for our runs but also work hard for our wickets,” he said.

At the conclusion of the Test match, the teams move on to the Kensington Oval in Barbados for the second Test set to start on March 16. The final Test is scheduled to be played at the National Cricket Stadium in Grenada beginning on March 24.

 

 

 

 

West Indies coach Phil Simmons has admitted the team's persistent and obvious struggles with the bat are hurtful, particularly as he believes the unit had started to show improvement last year.

Despite commendable performances from its bowling line-up, the Windies batting line-up continued to struggle for yet another series after going down 3-0 to India on Thursday.  At the crease, in South Asia, the team at times looked ill-prepared or unable to find the resolve or technical ability needed to put partnerships together at crucial times or cope with the India bowlers for any prolonged period.

Similar to its performance against Ireland last month, where they lost an ODI series against that opponent for the first time, the Windies looked, perhaps more than ever, susceptible to losing wickets in huge clusters, which made it impossible to chase even modest targets.  In three matches, the team failed to reach 200 with its highest score of 193 coming in an all-out effort in the second match, in pursuit of 237 for 9.

For the batsmen, it was Jason Holder who led the way with a modest 65 over three matches, followed by Nicholas Pooran with 61, while lower-order all-rounder Odean Smith had 60.  By comparison, India’s top three featured Kuldeep Yadav who made 104 in three matches, Rishabh Pant made 85, while Shreyas Iyer made 80 in just one match.  Overall, the India batting line-up, which chased a low target in the first match, outscored the West Indies line-up by 148 runs.

“This is difficult, the last six games have been difficult in this format.  We started putting things together last year when we played Sri Lanka, it was difficult against Australia, but we started putting things together.  For this (type of performance) to come now, it’s hard to take, it’s hard to take from the batsmen,” Simmons told members of the media on Thursday.

“It’s not outwardly showing, but it’s hurtful and the players know that.  We have to make sure that we do the right things moving forward to get this batting line-up or whoever the batting line-up is to function as a batting line-up, to have big partnerships and assess the thing properly.”

The team’s highest partnership of the series was a 78 run seventh-wicket stand between Fabian Allen and Jason Holder.  Overall, the majority of the team’s biggest partnerships came from batting places below the 5th wicket.

“The mode of dismissals is the biggest issue.  If we are assessing the situation and we are playing according to the situation, and you get out then that’s execution.  But not assessing the situation and knowing what you want to do in the situations and the modes of dismissal it’s hurtful, and it doesn’t make for good watching as we’ve seen.  It’s something the players have to sit and get right as soon as possible.  We can’t keep going like this.”

 

The West Indies just played three One-Day Internationals against India and failed to make 200 runs in any of them.

176, 193 and 169 were the scores the Caribbean side managed to put up during the series and Head Coach Phil Simmons, speaking in the post-series press conference on Friday, says this trend is concerning.

“It needs urgent attention. It cost us the last two games. If you bowl India out for 230 and 260, you expect to chase it,” he said.

The West Indies, not too long ago, showed improvement in their batting performances in ODIs, particularly in Sri Lanka’s tour of the West Indies in early 2021 which saw the regional side make scores of 236-2, 274-5 and 276-5 in the three matches.

“Just under a year ago, we were cruising to 280 and 290 against Sri Lanka who has similar spinners so the batting is a huge concern and people have got to stand up now as we go into our next set of ODIs in June,” Simmons added.

On a more positive note, Simmons praised the performance of his bowlers in the series.

“I think a positive is that the bowlers have done what we’ve asked of them. We’ve kept a strong India batting line-up to 230 and 260 and I think that’s a huge positive. The way how we’ve gone about our task on the field when bowling and fielding have been a huge positive all-round,” he added.

The West Indies will play India in three T20Is beginning on Wednesday while their next ODI assignment will be a three-match tour of the Netherlands in June.

 

 

 

West Indies head coach Phil Simmons is pleased to see vice-captain Nicholas Pooran slotting comfortably into the number three role in the team’s recent T20 win against England.

Partnered with man-of-the-match Rovman Powell, Pooran put on a near-perfect display, a combination of power-hitting, game management, and finesse.  The batsman put together a crucial 70 from 43 deliveries, which formed part of a match-winning 122 partnership for the third wicket.

Simmons admits the knock was a good illustration of the type of role the team envisions the batsman is capable of playing.

“It’s been a plan since World Cup.  As we saw, he is understanding his role better and better and yesterday (Wednesday) just showed exactly how we see him controlling the innings,” Simmons told members of the media on Wednesday.

“His communication and control with Rovman was a big plus yesterday,” he added.

Pooran came to the crease following the departure of Brandon King and was part of a 37-run partnership with Shai Hope before joining forces with Powell.

In total, Pooran has played 14 matches batting at the number three position, scoring a total of 356 runs, and has averaged 32.36 so far.

 

 

 

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