Marlon Samuels is a West Indies cricketer from Jamaica, born on 5 February 1981 in Kingston. The right-handed middle order batsman is also handy with the ball by virtue of his off-break bowling.
His career has been studded with controversies and achievements while representing West Indies in all three formats of the game.
In 2013, he was named as one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year. West Indies Cricket Board honored him with the Cricketer of the Year award in 2016.
Brother of former West Indies cricketer Robert Samuels, it was not unexpected when Marlon displayed markings of becoming a great player at a young age. He used to miss school in order to practice batting as he believed studying would distract him from his goal of joining the Windies cricket team.
His hard work bore fruit early and he was called to represent his country before even representing Jamaica in a first-class match.
Samuels made his international debut in an ODI match against Sri Lanka in 2000 at the age of 19. He scored the same number of runs as his age that day and could not get a wicket.
However, his potential was enough to earn him a spot for the Test series against Australia in 2000. He scored 35 runs in the first innings and scalped two wickets.
The first ton came out of his bat two years later in a test series against India in 2002-2003. His 104 helped West Indies to draw the match, a prospect which seemed impossible before Samuels came to bat.
He continued his performance in the ODI series that followed and made his maiden hundred in the final match, helping his team to clinch the series.
Rise to Glory
After coming back from a knee injury in 2006, Samuels played one of the most memorable knocks of his career. His unbeaten 100 helped West Indies successfully chase down Pakistan’s total. Another match winning performance against India next month cemented his spot in the 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup squad.
Following his ban in 2008, Samuels returned to play Jamaica in 2010 where he put his head and improved his game. He made his comeback when West Indies hosted Pakistan in April 2011.
Samuels displayed extraordinary cricket in the tour to England in 2012. He scored 386 runs in five innings, that included three fifties and one century.
In the T20 World Cup that followed in the same year, Samuels won the Man of the Match award in the final against Sri Lanka, where he scored a quick fire 78 to help West Indies clinch the title.
He repeated this feat in the 2016 World T20 as well, scoring an unbeaten 85 off 66 balls to carry West Indies to their second T20 World Cup title.
In February 2008, Samuels was suspended from bowling in international cricket due to his illegal bowling action. He was then accused of ties with bookies and was banned from international cricket for two years in May by International Cricket Council.
In 2015, Samuels was again reported for suspected illegal bowling action. He was banned again for 12 months when his action was found illegal for the second time.
Marlon Samuels has played for a number of clubs in his career including Duronto Rajshahi, Pune Warriors India, Basnahira Cricket Dundee, Melbourne Renegades, Antigua Hawksbills, St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, Comilla Victorians, Peshawar Zalmi, Kowloon Cantons, Delhi Daredevils and St Lucia Stars.
Marlon's Record in Numbers
He holds the record for being the only player to have won the Man of the Match award in a T20 World Cup Final twice. He also holds the record for the highest individual score (85) in a T20 World Cup final.