‘Anger of being away for two years motivates me’

Having led the West Indies to World Cup glory after three decades, a special welcome by the Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller, a motorcade ride to the parliament office and a hand-crafted national flag awaited Marlon Samuels on his return to Jamaica. In an interview with The Indian Express, Samuels speaks about his match-winning 78 in the final and throws light on his redemption journey after his two-year ban (2008-10) for receiving money from an Indian bookie.

There was a sense of anger in your play during the final-both during your innings and in the field.

A lot of anger. I carry it with me. It helps motivate me. It stems from the two years I was away. I've had a wonderful run across all three formats since my return. The night before the final, I told myself that this was a huge day for the team and the whole of the Caribbean. A world title was up for grabs after three decades, and it was up to me to play a stellar part.

Was it a kind of redemption for you, after having failed to capitalise on your talent for 10 years since making a great impression in India?

You say I didn't live up to my potential for 10 years. But I'll insist that I wasn't allowed to. I have had some good runs with the bat in the past too. But the system back home didn't let me build on them. I wasn't selected consistently enough. They're trying to back me again since my return. That's what they should have done back in 2002. Nevertheless, it's never too late. I am a survivor. A fighter. And once the sun rises from the darkness, the rainbow I see is red, green and gold.

It looked like you had a personal dispute to settle with Lasith Malinga.

... contd.

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