Darren Sammy, Captain of Peshawar Zalmi
Darren Sammy has gone from captain of Peshawar Zalmi to coach Image Credit: Facebook/PSL

Dubai: Through a surprise move, the Peshawar Zalmi management announced that Darren Sammy will not be captaining the team but has been appointed as the head coach of the squad. Left-arm pacer Wahab Riaz will be the new captain.

A few days ago, there were reports in Pakistan newspapers of a friction between Sammy and the Zalmi team management. It was following Sammy’s cryptic message on Twitter which said: “I’ve learnt that you are important until you’ve completed your role. #dealingwithhumans,” His tweet appeared after he was rested for the match against Karachi Kings. His highest score in the PSL so far this season was a knock of 30 runs against Karachi in the second match.

Sammy denied the news of any rift with Peshawar Zalmi chairman Javed Afridi and tweeted “I can’t believe that the media would think that my bro @JAfridi10 and I would ever have an issue. I’m actually laughing at this. Listen guys I love this man as my own brother. Are u guys serious @PeshawarZalmi is my baby and nothing comes between us. Absolutely nothing,”

Sammy was awarded the Nishan-e-Pakistan and honorary citizenship for his invaluable contribution to cricket in the country, especially in leading the way for foreign players to come to Pakistan and play in the PSL. He said: “My fitness and form are not what they need to be in order to win games for Zalmi. I had a fantastic time with Peshawar Zalmi but now I realise that I am not fit enough to play.”

Sammy replaces Muhammad Akram, who was the head coach of the team and will now be the director of cricket for the Peshawar franchise. Zalmi said Sammy will be head coach of the team for next two years. Interestingly, Akram said that since Sammy is a contract player and if the rules permit and the management decides, Sammy may be available as a player too in the current PSL season.