Windies top order batsman Shai Hope has rejected claims a coaching change just ahead of the start of the ICC World Cup was a major contributing factor to the team’s dismal display.

Despite being considered as one of the teams capable of causing problems at the tournament, the Windies went on to register just two wins, which left them second to last in the overall standings. 

A part of the optimism heading into the tournament was fueled by the team’s performance against England during its tour of the Caribbean.  Richard Pybus was the interim coach in charge of the team’s exceptional performance for the series of matches against the English but was replaced with Floyd Reifer only weeks ahead of the World Cup by a newly appointed Cricket West Indies (CWI) administration.

The move has led to criticism in some quarters, with many accusing the administration of unsettling the team.  Hope was, however, quick to insist that the players take full responsibility for the poor results.

“Regardless of what happened behind the scenes, we have to go out there and play cricket,” Hope said.

“It doesn’t matter what happened the week before, the day before, two years before. It’s about crossing that line and playing the hardest you can for the region.”

The Windies started brightly with a big win over Pakistan but slumped to defeats at the hands of Australia, England, Bangladesh, New Zealand, India and Sri Lanka before winning a game against Afghanistan.  Hope admitted it was difficult to pinpoint what went wrong.

“If I knew the answer to that, I reckon we’d be in the semis. It’s just one of those things. As I said, we didn’t play the better cricket on the day, and in a tournament like this, you have to basically play your best game each game.”

 

Despite the promise he has shown, Windies batsman Sunil Ambris has not been given a new central contract even as Cricket West Indies (CWI) have increased the number offered in the new contract period. 

Cricket West Indies and Cricket Canada have agreed to an expanded partnership in the forthcoming months that will see more collaboration and participation of players and administrators in cricket, at CWI and Cricket Canada events.

The Antigua and Barbuda Labour Commissioner has been informed of the dispute between Cricket West Indies (CWI) and former employees, Courtney Browne and Eldine Baptiste. 

Regional cricket commentator and analyst, Fazeer Mohammed, has rubbished claims that players who showed up to play for the ICC World Cup qualifiers should have been given preferential consideration when the final squad was selected by Cricket West Indies (CWI) on Tuesday.

Of the sixteen players who took part in the qualifier in Zimbabwe last year, which secured the team a place at next month’s World Cup, nine have been included in the final squad. 

Two-time T20 World Cup winner Marlon Samuels is the most notable absentee in a list that also includes Jason Mohammed, Devendra Bishoo, Nikita Miller, Keemo Paul, Rovman Powell and Kesrick Williams. 

 In this instance, scribbled on the final list submitted to the ICC on Tuesday, the most notable inclusion would perhaps be that of Andre Russell who turned down the chance to represent the region at the qualifiers, after stating that he had not sufficiently recovered from injury. 

The situation has sparked debate in some areas, particularly the exclusion of Samuels who had not played cricket for some time due to an injury but expected to be fit for the World Cup.  In an interview with the SportsMax Zone, however, Mohammed insisted cricketing reasons should be the only consideration in selecting the squad.

“This is a competitive sport. This is not about giving favours or doing people favours for long service or that sort of thing, or turning up when others didn’t turn up,” Mohammed told the SportsMax Zone.

“You remember in the days of the Kerry Packer era when the West Indies lost their Packer players for a period and the likes of Alvin Kallicharan and even Malcolm Marshal and so on came into the West Indies squad. From the moment that was sorted out and the World Cup came up in 1979 all the top players were back,” Mohammed added.

“There is no room for sentiment in competitive sport.  I understand the recognizing the roles played but are we selecting a squad as a favour for turning up or are we selecting a squad to be competitive or even get to the winning stage of the World Cup.

Cricket West Indies has finally announced its 15-man squad for the World Cup.  Did they get it right?

A lawyer for the recently dismissed Courtney Browne-led Cricket West Indies (CWI) selection panel has insisted his clients are strongly considering the initiation of legal proceedings and taken exception to recent statements made by Cricket West Indies (CWI) president Ricky Skerritt.

In dismissing the three-man panel, which also consisted of Lockhart Sebastien and Eldine Baptiste, last week, Skerritt said “we have terminated the old embedded selection policy which secretly, but actively, victimised some players and banished them from selection consideration”.

Tony Astaphan, the lawyer for the dismissed selectors, insisted they had taken issue with both the terminations and their public characterization as a group.  He claimed the selectors were simply following instructions and had always received positive affirmation for the body.

“My clients are very troubled by their dismissal and the manner of their dismissal, particularly the statements made about the 'old embedded selection policy which secretly but actively victimised players and banished them from selection consideration.  That's a serious [charge] and it affects the manner of dismissal of Mr Browne, Mr Baptiste and Mr Sebastien,” Astaphan said in a recent radio interview.

“What we are looking at now within the context of the labour code of Antigua and Barbuda is whether having regard to all the facts and circumstances, including the terms of the agreements signed by these good gentlemen, who as you know have dedicated their lives to West Indies cricket, constitute independent contractors or employees under the Antigua and Barbuda labour code.”

Astaphan pointed out that Browne had also been considered an exceptional employee by the CWI, which led to his contract being renewed on several occasions.

“He has been there since 2010 and you having before every renewal of his contract, gone through what is called an employee job assessment and getting extraordinary marks on matters of ethics and selections, to be thrown out like that with the commentary of a discriminatory selection policy which he did not set,” the Dominican explained.

“I think it is a well-known fact there was a selection criteria either approved by the board or requested by the board, and there was a technical team set up with the specific jurisdictional authority to decide who was eligible or not. They were the ones that made the decision as to who was eligible or not.”

Browne was replaced by Jamaican Robert Haynes, with Jimmy Adams and interim head coach Floyd Reifer also appointed to the panel.

 

 

Vasbert Drakes was fired as assistant coach of the Windies after a particularly fruitful series for the Caribbean side and the former bowler for the regional side believes his ousting unjust and illegal. His Lawyer, Ralph Thorne QC, says, while he cannot go public with the reasons Cricket West Indies have outlined as those which led to the sacking, he is unimpressed.

The Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) will, in short order, be advertising for the post of a head coach for the Jamaica Scorpions after losing Robert Haynes to regional duty. 

Robert Haynes has been confirmed as the new Cricket West Indies (CWI) chairman of selectors, ushering in a clean sweep of the selection panel by the newly appointed Ricky Skerritt-led administration.

The 54-year-old Haynes will replace Barbadian Courtney Browne as head of the four-man committee.  The rest of the panel will consist of CWI director of cricket Jimmy Adams and Floyd Reifer, who has also been named as a replacement for interim coach Richard Pybus.

Pybus who previously served as head of the high-performance centre in 2018 and Windies Director of Cricket from 2013 to 2016 seemed off to a promising start in the job.  Under Pybus, the Windes defeated England after winning the Test series 2-1 and sharing the ODIs 2-2 to lift the team’s confidence ahead of the World Cup. 

Reifer comes in to replace Pybus before the Englishman's contract ends. He was contracted by the previous administration until the end of the India series in the Caribbean in August.

 

Despite early successes at the helm of the Windies, interim head coach Richard Pybus, could face one of the falling axes from a new administration, led by president of Cricket West Indies (CWI), Ricky Skerritt. 

Former West Indies coach, Phil Simmons, may be back at the helm of the team he was unceremoniously dropped from if what he says is anything to go by. 

Windies all-rounder Marlon 'Icon' Samuels has insisted former CWI president Dave Cameron has never been the man for the job and insists his motives were purely selfish.

Former president of Cricket West Indies (CWI) Wycliffe ‘Dave’ Cameron has expressed disappointment with the outcome of the organization’s elections, which saw Ricky Skerritt installed as new head of the organization on Sunday.   

Ahead of the election, the 47-year-old Cameron, a three-term incumbent, was confident he had at least secured six votes heading into the association’s decisive vote.  His prediction would at the very least have secured a tie and a second round of voting.  At the end of Sunday’s count, however, Cameron lost by an 8-4 margin.

Although the final vote if yet to be confirmed, initial reports suggest Skerritt won the election after securing support from Trinidad and Tobago, Leeward Islands, Windward Islands and Cameron’s home nation of Jamaica.  Cameron is believed to have secured support from Guyana and Barbados.  Although the incumbent would not have been counting on the support of his home nation, it was previously announced that he had secured the support of the previously mentioned teams.

“I trusted the process.  I thought that we were men of integrity and I banked on that,” Cameron said.

“From where I am standing, I am very disappointed that men gave me their word and then went a different way, but that’s elections all around and I think we have a lot to be proud of,” he added.

Despite being deposed, Cameron insisted was he proud of his accomplishments and excited about the future of West Indies cricket, should it maintain its current trajectory.  He believes a need for more autonomy may have contributed to the result.

“The views expressed seemed to suggest that everyone wanted to do their own thing.  My own view is we have a strategic plan and a board of directors and we have decided in a particular direction that everyone can’t go off and do their own thing.”

Former West Indies Cricket team manager Ricky Skerritt has been appointed as the new president of Cricket West Indies (CWI) after securing the necessary votes at the association’s Annual General Meeting, at the Jamaica Pegasus on Sunday.

By the official count, Skerritt and his running mate Dr Kishore Shallow defeated incumbents Whycliffe ‘Dave’ Cameron and Emmanuel Nanthan by an 8-4 margin.  Unofficially, it is reported that Skerritt and Shallow managed to secure the support of Trinidad and Tobago, Leeward Islands, Windward Islands and Camron’s home nation Jamaica.  The incumbents Cameron and Nantan are believed to have received the support of Barbados and Guyana.

The result ended a three-term spell for the Jamaican, which spanned a six-year period.  Cameron was first elected to the office in 2013 when he toppled former St Lucian diplomat Julian Hunte, to whom he had served as vice-president from 2007 until he took office.  During his tenure, Cameron has been credited with implementing improved retainer contracts for players and officials, restructuring the regional competitions and improved relations with the West Indies Player’s Association (WIPA).  On his watch, the Windies team while struggling in the world rankings, claimed two T20 world titles, and the women’s and youth titles. 

Heading into the election the Kittitian Skerritt had painted the incumbent as not having enough of a pro-cricket stance with his governance and failing to commit to the establishment of term limits.   

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