Marlon Samuels needs to go

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< 1 minute read
Photo by Sarah Ansell
Photo by Sarah Ansell

We’ve always liked Marlon Samuels. He’s mischievous and funny and his favourite cricketer is Nasser Hussain.

He’s also skilful. In the 2012 World T20 final, Samuels waded into Lasith Malinga as if he were a particularly inviting jacuzzi. He’s made Test hundreds. He’s looked really good in doing so.

But skill and humour seem distant concepts at the moment. He averaged 24 in 2013, 30 in 2014 and 27 in 2015. Being as he’s not allowed to bowl any more, it’s hard to see the point. Marlon Samuels has been metaphorically cut by the thunder and yet the West Indies have had a look around and concluded that they have no choice but to persist with him.

It’s the fielding that should tip the balance though. During the first Test, Samuels’ lackadaisical approach was widely mocked. Almost as if it’s the only entertainment he can bring, he’s taken it up a notch in the second Test, missing the ball and shelling easy catches.

Senior players are important. Senior players can provide guidance. Samuels is halfway down the road to being a laughing stock, coolly beckoning his team-mates to follow him.


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  1. Not convinced they made a great choice of captain.

    Guess the number of test wickets he has.

    Then go look it up on cricinfo. How much were you wrong by?

    I’m not saying “never pick a bowler as captain”, though it has some cons (more injury prone than batsmen perhaps, and a captain’s job is harder in the field so trying to do two things at once is likely mind-mangling for both aspects… At the very least it’d be easy to over or underbowl yourself).

    But picking one with that little proven experience was a wild shot and I’m not sure it has come off. I generally rate a bowler by their test average and ODI economy, and a captain by their wins or the closeness or sheer fighting quality of their losses, and neither are looking too good.

    1. We know what you mean, but in a satisfying bout of nominative determinism Holder’s very much the holding bowler in that attack – a job he actually does okay. Plus he’d get more wickets if his colleagues were a bit more reliable and didn’t allow huge partnerships to build. We suspect there’s plenty to come from him with the ball if captaincy doesn’t first crush him.

      1. A lot of observers reckon he has a serious amount of bowling talent. I doubt they’re all wrong, and I hope not.

        But making him captain as well was a big big ask.

      2. A big ask for anyone. Think they were going for the Graeme Smith style ‘might as well pick the right bloke early’ approach.

      3. this has become English opener debate

        *Compton should never have been sacked as opener
        **Gayle should never have been sacked as captain

        now there are no alternatives left?

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