Cricket stadium to be named after West Indies' WT20 star


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Darren Sammy, who led the West Indies to their second World T20 title in India recently has been bestowed with a special honour with the cricket ground in his home country St Lucia to be renamed after him.

St Lucia Prime Minister Kenny Anthony announced that Beausejour Stadium will be renamed Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium after the Windies captain led his team to glory in thrilling fashion in the World T20 final against England on Sunday night.

Sammy is the first international cricketer to emerge from the island nation, having first represented West Indies in ODI cricket in 2004, and has gone on to captain his country in all three formats.

Opening batsman Johnson Charles, the other St Lucian in the West Indies squad, will have a grandstand named after him at the venue and receive a plot of land on St Lucia, a small Caribbean island most famed as a tourist destination and boasting a population of less than 200,000.

Former Australian stars Michael Hussey and Shane Watson have sent messages of congratulations to Sammy following the announcement.

Both Hussey and Watson will be taking part in the 2016 Caribbean Premier League.

Hussey, who averaged 37.94 in 38 T20 internationals for Australia, said: "To win a world title for your country is the ultimate accolade and I would like to offer my congratulations to fellow Zouks man Darren Sammy, coach Phil Simmons and the West Indies team on their win last weekend in the ICC World T20.

"With the government now marking this historic achievement with the re-naming of the Beausejour Cricket Ground, it indicates once more to the world the high love and esteem that the West Indies has for their local heroes. Congrats to Darren on this incredible accolade in his home nation.

"It is clear to see that West Indies cricket is on the ascendancy, after the performances of the Under-19's and Women's teams, and they are to be commended for their performances over the last few weeks."

Watson, who was named in the ICC T20 Team of the Tournament and retired from the international arena as the number one all-rounder in the T20 rankings after a string of outstanding displays for Australia, added: "I knew when I first signed up for CPL how passionate the West Indies public are, but to receive this news about the St Lucia government's decision to re-name the national stadium in honour of one of their favourite sporting sons is a huge thing, especially for someone so young who has so much top level cricket ahead of him.

"Darren is a great leader and a true champion in all regards, and I know how passionate he is about the Zouks. He deserves this accolade for the manner he has led the West Indies team and this is an honour for all time," he said.