West Indies dump Gayle as skipper and face 'new era' with Sammy

Chris Gayle has been sacked as West Indies captain and replaced by Darren Sammy. The West Indies Cricket Board announced the decision last night when naming the squad for the tour of Sri Lanka.

"We are at the dawn of a new era in West Indies cricket and the selection committee has entrusted the challenging job of captaincy to Darren Sammy because it is believed that he has demonstrated the attributes of a leader of this diverse group of men," said selection committee chairman Clyde Butts

Gayle, who has been skipper since 2007, is still in the squad as a batsman with Brendan Nash named as vice-captain for the Tests in Sri Lanka. "Chris Gayle, the former captain, led the West Indies during a challenging period and the board thanks him for stepping up then but it is now time to pass the mantle on as the West Indies rebuilds," said WICB chief executive, Dr Ernest Hilaire. The Windies are seventh in the Test rankings and eighth in the world in the one-day format and the WICB is hoping 26-year-old all-rounder Sammy can inspire an improvement.

Sammy himself is excited at being handed the opportunity to oversee a new era in West Indian cricket. "Being appointed West Indies captain is an honour and distinction which I will treat with the highest regard and dignity," Sammy said.His first assignment is a tour of Sri Lanka which features three Test matches, five one-day internationals and one Twenty20 game.

The England pace bowler Stuart Broad insists he has learned from his mistakes and will go into the forthcoming Ashes tour a more mature cricketer.

Broad was fined 50 per cent of his match fee for throwing the ball at Pakistan batsman Zulqarnain Haider during the second Test at Edgbaston this summer and, while he knows aggression is key against the Aussies in their own backyard, he is confident he can provide it without getting into trouble.

Broad said: "As a bowler, I need to have that real desire to get the batsmen out and be in their face and be aggressive because you've got to try and make the batsman feel a bit uncomfortable to get him out but I also know the lines that are there and not to cross them.

"Unfortunately, I did cross that once this summer and got punished for it but I've learned from mistakes and hopefully this winter all will go to plan."

Meanwhile, Bangladeshi paceman Rubel Hossain stunned New Zealand with four wickets to help his country beat the tourists by three runs in Mirpur yesterday and complete a historic 4-0 one-day series sweep. It is the first time Bangladesh have won a ODI series against top-flight opposition.

New Zealand were bowled out for 171 with just three balls remaining and just shy of their target of 174, with Rubel taking the final wicket when he bowled Kyle Mills in a dramatic finish.