CPL 2020: Daren Sammy hopes to receive Nishan-e-Pakistan by early 2021

Sammy, who is leading St. Lucia Zouks in the ongoing Caribbean Premier League, congratulated the Pakistan Test team for travelling to England amid COVID-19. 

Sammy was supposed to receive the Honorary Citizenship of Pakistan and Nishan-e-Pakistan, the country's highest civilian award in March before COVID-19 struck.   -  SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Daren Sammy’s love for Pakistan and its cricket culture is not new. The West Indies all-rounder has been part of the Pakistan Super League and had also travelled to the country with the World XI side in 2017 to support its cricket resumption.

Sammy, the captain of Peshawar Zalmi in the PSL, was supposed to receive the Honorary Citizenship of Pakistan and Nishan-e-Pakistan, the country's highest civilian award in March before COVID-19 struck.

Currently leading the St. Lucia Zouks in the ongoing Caribbean Premier League (CPL), Sammy expects to officially receive the honour by early 2021.

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“I was supposed to get the award on the 23rd of March but COVID situation happened and the borders were closed. People had to return home. I would probably have to wait till later this year or next year to officially get the award,” Sammy told Sportstar on the eve of the CPL fixture against Trinbago Knight Riders.

“Nishan-e-Pakistan award is very honourable to me and I am grateful and thankful. It is a privilege to be recognised in a place with over 200 million people compared to St. Lucia with 140,000 people. It is something to be proud of. Everybody knows how much I have enjoyed playing in Pakistan,” he said.

Sammy also congratulated Azhar Ali’s side that took the brave step of travelling to England for the Test series amid the coronavirus scare. “First it was done by the West Indies followed by Pakistan. We should not take them for granted; and their love for cricket and wanting to give the viewers some cricket action. But they haven’t really played well. They had a good opportunity in the first Test but they let it slip away,” said the 36-year-old.

Sammy feels Pakistan is a good side with all-format players in its ranks but it hasn’t clicked in the English conditions. “England has always been difficult to beat in their own conditions, they really put the choke hole on Pakistan but Pakistan is a team which has good batsmen in its top five in all formats like Babar Azam, and you have young fast bowlers in Shaheen Afridi and Naseem Shah and then, Yasir Shah as a spinner. Test cricket is a contest where you have to be mentally and technically sound to beat England in their conditions and I don’t think Pakistan has been that consistent,” he said.

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