There are no question marks over Lendl Simmons’ ability but he has played a couple of knocks that haven’t helped his cause.
The two extremes
Remember Lendl Simmons carting the Indian bowlers to all parts of the park in the semi final of the 2016 T20 World Cup?
In fact, he had landed in Mumbai just a day before the competition and even jet lag could not stop him from playing a match winning innings. This is what Lendl Simmons needs to do — clear his mind and just go for his shots.
The reality though is that Simmons has struggled to get going in recent times. In West Indies’ 2nd match of the super 12 stage of the 2021 T20 World Cup, Lendl Simmons came out to open the batting with Evin Lewis and got stuck. While Lewis smashed 56 off 35 balls, Simmons struggled woefully to get to 16 off 35 balls and ultimately cost West Indies the match.
The captain’s support
Despite the horrid knock, West Indies captain Kieron Pollard defended Simmons after their defeat against South Africa.
“We haven’t scored enough runs. Batters haven’t come to the party, again disappointing today. I thought the first six overs in terms of end result.. 43/0, we will take that. Not losing wickets in the powerplay was important. We lost a couple of wickets later and it was just stop start. Yes Simmons got stuck, these things happen. After six overs he was there and we wanted to bat a couple of more overs without losing wickets but you are not going to get me pinpoint and you are not going to get me throwing my players under the bus. At the end of the day he was out there trying for us.”
“Yes he may not have got it done, but when you look at it… Rassie played for them, the only difference is he came out not out but his strike rate was low as well. It was a total disappointing batting effort. We need to win first before thinking of net run rate. I thought the bowlers did well to bring it down to 18 odd overs. Batting has disappointed us, which is why we lost.”