The name Simmons has been an integral part of West Indies cricket for the past 30 years.
59-year-old Phil Simmons was a solid all-rounder who played 26 Tests and 143 One Day Internationals (ODIs) for West Indies from 1987 to 1999. Phil has coached in a number of countries over the years and after being West Indies coach from 2015 to 2016, he was re-hired as West Indies head coach.
Seven years after Phil played his last match for West Indies, his nephew Lendl, now 34, donned the maroon for the first time. Between 2006 and 2017, he played 8 Tests, 68 ODIs, and 68 T20i for West Indies.
However, Simmons resigned from his post after the tour of Australia, which ended with the regional team’s unfortunate exit from the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia. Lendl also announced his retirement from international cricket at the beginning of the year.
As Phil Simmons and Lendl Simmons retire from West Indies cricket, another Simmons is looking to forge his own path.
Lendl’s nephew Keagan Simmons hopes to make his mark at the highest level when Phil Simmons and Lendl Simmons retire from West Indies cricket.
A member of the Simmons family, 23-Year-old Keagan, has a retainer contract with the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force for the 2022-23 season and was a member of the West Indies academy team that recently competed in the CG United Super50 Cup.
The right-handed opener made his debut for the Red force in the 2019-2020 first-class season, fresh from the Under-19 level, and even then, he had high hopes for himself after scoring 89 in the first innings.
However, the Covid-19 pandemic sidelined him for two years and after a season in which he was, “still kind of getting back into the game”, he is ready to push on as he looks for stability.
Looking back on his performances in 2022, Keagan told the Trinidad Express that he is working on identifying red-ball and white-ball mistakes and correcting them.
“I think for sure in the four-day season, I was a bit disappointed that I didn’t meet my goals for the tournament but I think it was definitely a learning experience and I am pretty much still new to playing at the first-class level.”
“There were a few mistakes I made that I am not accustomed to making. I think now I have a better understanding of the things I need to do to prepare for next season.”
Speaking further, he said that playing with the Academy in the Super 50 was successful but disappointing. He explained,
“playing with the Academy in the Super50, I was much more successful but I am still a bit disappointed. I still felt like I could have been better at that level. I hold myself to a higher level and I expected better things from myself in 50 overs. all in all, I think I am pretty happy, this being the first season of cricket after Covid. I was still kind of just getting back into the game and I know what I have to work on going forward.”
For next season, Simmons said, he will recognize past mistakes, move on from them and work towards achieving the goals.
“I have my different goals for the various tournaments I am going to play.”
“Numbers-wise, I’m focussing on the process. I know I need to be mentally clear on what I want to do. The mistakes I have made in the past are really thinking too much and going outside of my game plan. So, once I focus on that and I stay sharp and ready to play, I know I can achieve the goals that I have set in all the different competitions.”
The youngster said that he has worked well with the Red Force and the Academy and his primary goal is to join the regional team in the next few years.
“My goal is really to perform the best I could in the four-day season and within the tours, I will have with the West Indies Academy. I know once I perform as well as I know I could in those tournaments, I will put my hand up for a future West Indies selection whether it is next year or within the next few years.”