Samuels supports Miller
NEWLY APPOINTED COACH Robert Samuels believes spin bowler Nikita Miller is the right person for the position of captain of the Jamaica Scorpions heading into the new-look regional fourday Digicel SportsMax WICB Professional League.
A consistent performer for the national team since making his four-day debut 16 seasons ago, Miller replaces young batsman Paul Palmer Jr.
“Nikita has proven himself to be a leader on and off the field,’’ said Samuels of the 34-yearold, who earlier this year led the team during the regional one-day NAGICO Super50 in Trinidad and Tobago.
RIGHT MAN FOR THE JOB
“Sitting in the dressing room and listening to Nikita talk about cricket and talk to the players, and how the players relate to him, I think he is the right man for the job at this time,’’ he declared.
The previous selection of the now 24-year-old Palmer Jr, a former national Under-19 captain, but whose ascendancy to the post came as somewhat as a surprise last season, was made by the then Wavell Hinds-led national selection panel.
The selection panel also included Robert Haynes, Wayne Lewis, Delroy Morgan and Cleveland Davidson.
However, coinciding with the reelection of Jamaica Cricket Association president, Wilford ‘Billy’ Heaven earlier this year, the panel has been changed.
The selection panel now consists of three standing members with outgoing national coach Junior Bennett the new chairman, and returning selector Ephraim McLeod, as well as Samuels being the other members.
This change in personnel, according to Samuels, has since taken a different approach to the selection of a leader with merit of a place in the team being an important barometer.
“The first thing one should do is select a leader that can command and demand a position in the team first and foremost,’’ said Samuels.
“Nikita has commanded and demanded his position in the team over the years, is an avid performer season after season, and for this, the players have the utmost respect for him.’’
Jamaica, having failed to finish in the top three for the past three regional four-day seasons are set to open their account against two-time defending champions Guyana Jaguars at the Providence Stadium next weekend.