Sammy: We are here on a mission
KOLKATA, India (CMC):
Captain Darren Sammy says West Indies' achievement of reaching the final of the Twenty20 World Cup has come against all odds, especially against the backdrop of the contracts impasse which dogged the side before they departed the Caribbean.
The tour seemed in danger prior to the squad's departure when they became locked in a dispute with the West Indies Cricket Board over remuneration for the tournament.
And Sammy said this controversial part of the Windies build-up had also served as motivation for the unit.
"We came here on a mission. We were inspired by the Under-19 boys earlier this year. The ladies won ... and now we have two West Indian teams in the final and that means a lot to Caribbean people," Sammy said.
"The men's side especially has been going through a lot. We all know what happened just before the tournament and we still feel it is this West Indies team and the coaching staff versus everybody else."
West Indies stormed into the final on Thursday when they stunned hosts and tournament favourites India by seven wickets in a tantalising semi-final at the Wankhede Stadium.
The Caribbean side entered the game as the underdogs but spectacularly chased down 193 with two balls to spare, to book their final against England.
They were struggling at 19 for two in the third over after losing Chris Gayle (5) and Marlon Samuels (8) but Lendl Simmons unfurled a brilliant, career-best unbeaten 82 to fire West Indies to victory.
"Everybody said Chris is under pressure [as the mainstay of the batting] but I said it, yes he's our best T20 player but we have 15 match winners and the games we've won, somebody has taken responsibility in order to chase down totals."
Despite the imposing total, Sammy said his side never gave up hope of winning and were now even more confident ahead of the final at Eden Gardens.
"We just believed. At the start of the game when we were in the field, we said it was ours for the taking. They will not give it to us, we have to go and take it," the all-rounder noted.