Cricket: West Indies - Warne got what he deserved

Marlon Samuels and Shane Warne. Photo / Getty and AP images
Marlon Samuels and Shane Warne. Photo / Getty and AP images

The emotion-charged West Indies have rallied behind polarising star Marlon Samuels, claiming Shane Warne got exactly what he deserved.

Caribbean cricket celebrated like kings after their incredible World Cup triumph over England, but not a lot of it was gracious - with Warne, England villain Ben Stokes and commentator Mark Nicholas all on the receiving end of some vicious and in Warne's case, personal sprays.

Nicholas described it as a "detonation moment" for a group of players who have been fighting an ongoing bitter war with their own cricket board for some years now.

But while Darren Sammy's post-match blow-up was largely political, man-of-the-match Samuels' was motivated only by settling old scores when he took centre stage at an extraordinary press conference.

The ICC have refused to dismiss the possibility that Samuels could still face a fine for bringing the game into disrepute: "The ICC is disappointed with his conduct.

That's not expected from someone of his stature in experience."

Both captain Sammy and coach Phil Simmons said one of cricket's most notorious figures was justified in his nasty attack on Warne.

"You can't keep bashing people and not expect a backlash at some point," said Simmons.

"Marlon is very emotional and the emotion came out then. I think it's something that's been pent up in him for a while and the emotion came out.

"For me it was a good time for it to come out because it meant that it fuelled him in what he had to do and that only went well for us."

Sammy admitted he hadn't slept a wink following his team's epic triumph, telling media through the raspiest voice: "You see these eyes? No sleep, no voice," he said. "I partied all throughout the night."
The Windies captain apologised for not referencing the defeated England once in his highly emotional acceptance speech, but said Samuels had nothing to be ashamed of.

After smashing 85 not out off 66 to lift the Windies from an impossible position, Samuels was entitled to say whatever he wanted according to Sammy.

"Marlon is his own man. We are all responsible men. I had my say, a lot was said, a lot had happened before the tournament," Sammy said.

"We know in order to make the big statement we wanted to, we had to win the tournament. Now we've won it, now we've walked the talk and put action on the cricket field now we can express our opinions freely as we choose."

The bitterness between Warne and Samuels dates back to an ugly Big Bash match several years ago when the leg-spinner screamed "F*** you Marlon, F*** you Marlon" before the tough Jamaican hurled his bat in Warne's direction.

Warne was a relentless critic of Samuels during the Windies summer tour of Australia and Carlos Brathwaite - the six-hitting magic man - believes criticism levelled at his teammate by Warne and the wider media was over the top.

"I know Marlon and Marlon is a guy who rises in these situations. I guess Shane Warne is doing his job, I don't want to comment on his job or on Marlon's feelings," he said.

"But I can comment on the way I felt through Australia and I know (I thought it was difficult) the stick that he was copping. Not only from Shane Warne, but from the Australian and the English public.

Warne has so far remained tight-lipped over the matter refusing numerous interview requests, including one from host broadcasters Star who were paying him to commentate through the World T20.

"This is what true champions are made of. He fought through everything in Australia and he came here and he just won us a World Cup.

"(Returning serve), that's up to him.

"I'd just like to say congrats to Marlon ... it was an absolutely amazing knock he played. Two World Cup finals (2012 as well) and two man-of-the-match performances, it says a lot. Big-game performer."

Nine commentator Nicholas penned a column for cricinfo where he had used a throwaway line describing the Windies as being "short on brains".

Nicholas yesterday wrote a fresh piece apologising for his error, and said he and Sammy had made their piece - after the Windies skipper indicated it was the team's motivation for victory.

"He was highly emotional as he has said to me himself. He got a bit carried away because he was emotional about everything else that's been hounding them for a bit of time, he's great," Nicholas told News Corp.

"I shouldn't have said what I said, it was completely careless. He was perfectly entitled to have a go and it's quite funny, he thanked me for the added motivation.

"I think West Indies cricketers have been through a lot and I think there's probably a detonation moment isn't there. And when you're on the safe ground having won the tournament you're going to press the button.

"If people have got grievances, that's when they suddenly flow out. The emotions were so high."

- news.com.au

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