Former West Indies coach Phil Simmons has announced his intention to step down as the coach of the Afghanistan team following this month’s ICC World Cup.

The 56-year-old took up the job as manager of the Asian team in 2017, one year after leaving the post of manager of the Caribbean team.  The former all-rounder is credited with playing a crucial role in guiding the team back to the ICC World Cup and was such was a prime candidate for a contract renewal.

Simmons has, however, revealed that he believes the time is right to try something new.

"I have thought about it and I have actually given the ACB my notice that I will not be renewing my contract," Simmons told ESPNcricinfo.

 "I will move on to something different once my contract expires on July 15.

 "I signed up originally for 18 months and I think I have done a lot in this period. It is time for me to move on to something else now. To want to get to the World Cup - that was ACB's goal at the time they appointed me. My goal is always to leave things better than when I joined: the way we practice, the way we think about the game, the way we assess other teams. I've tried to help the players in all those areas."

While speculation has been rife that the move coincides with leadership changes made by the Afghanistan Cricket Board’s (ACB), without the knowledge of the coach, it also lines up with recent changes made in the leadership of Cricket West Indies (CWI).

With Ricky Skerritt replacing Dave Cameron as CWI boss the administration made several changes, including the appointment of Floyd Reifer as interim coach.  It is believed the new administration could have Simmons in mind for the long term post, an idea to which he has not objected to.

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.

Cricket West Indies has expressed sadness at the passing of Seymour Nurse, the outstanding batsman from Barbados, who represented the West Indies between 1960 and 1969.

Courtney Browne and Eldine Baptiste have filed suit against Cricket West Indies citing unfair dismissal from their jobs as West Indies selectors effective March 31, 2019.

CWI president Ricky Skerritt has insisted he is proud of the methodology used by the Robert Haynes interim squad to select the 15-man West Indies team for the World Cup.

Newly appointed president of Cricket West Indies (CWI) Ricky Skerritt has insisted the association is not looking to burn bridges with discarded officials, despite making several quick changes since taking office.

Interim coach Richard Pybus, West Indies assistant coach Vasbert Drakes and the entire Courtney Browne-led selection panel were among the casualties when the new board began to enforce its mandate last month.

Some of the parties have, however, taken exception to their dismissals and threatened legal action against CWI.  While he insisted he was not yet briefed on the legal situations, Skerritt was quick to point out that the organization was not interested in alienating the recently dismissed officials and that other positions could be open to them in the future.

“What I would say is that each situation has been handled on its own merit and there is no intention to make things more difficult for any past players than it has it to be,” Skerritt told the SportsMax Zone.

“Whatever the beliefs, we are about cricket.  We are about helping players, we are about helping past players.  We are about inclusiveness and we want past players involved in developing cricket and providing services of different kinds,” he added. 

“If somebody is not used now as a selector it doesn’t mean they can’t be used later as something else. If somebody is not used as a coach it doesn’t mean they can’t be used later as some other kind of professional in cricket.  We are not trying to burn any bridges with anybody.”

 

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.

 

 

Cricket West Indies has been appointed Jamaican businessman and government senator Don Wehby chairman of a Task Force on Corporate Governance Reform.

Cricket West Indies President Ricky Skerritt has expressed sadness at the passing of former president Pat Rousseau OJ.

Newly appointed Cricket West Indies (CWI) president Ricky Skerritt has insisted that the newly formed body is determined to dispel the 'myth’ that several of the team’s senior players are no longer interested in representing the team.

In recent years several of the region’s most high-profile players have found themselves at odds with the regional program’s selectors as heavy T20 league schedule has often clashed with the international game.  For various reasons T20 stars like Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo, who retired from the sport last year, have not consistently represented the region.

Since taking over the office, however, Skerritt and his administration have dismissed the Courtney Browne-led selection panel and installed Robert Haynes.  The administration has since begun to reach out to the players, including Bravo.

“There's a myth that our elite players don't want to play for the West Indies. Over the last couple of weeks, we've engaged several of them and prior to the election, I personally engaged several of them and the desire and hunger to play for their West Indian colours is as strong as ever,” Skerritt said.

“What we have to do is to make sure we put systems in place that can respect the players and help the players to respect their responsibility when they are actually involved in West Indies cricket, and do it in a way that is clearly communicated and that there's mutual respect and understanding,” he added.

“I have no doubt that in the hearts and in the minds of all of these players, the performance of the West Indies team and being involved in a successful West Indies team setup is important to them.”

Kieron Pollard has made it publicly clear that he is very interested in making the Windies team to the World Cup. Pollard's statements came after Cricket West Indies President Ricky Skerritt revamped the Windies coaching staff and selection panel ahead of the marquee event. Does Pollard have a legitimate claim for a spot?

Cricket West Indies (CWI) president Ricky Skerritt has made bold moves with the replacement of chairman of selectors Courtney Browne with Robert Haynes and interim coach Richard Pybus with Floyd Reifer.

Newly appointed president of Cricket West Indies (CWI) Ricky Skerritt has announced big changes to West Indies cricket.

Windies all-rounder Kieron Pollard has admitted he is hopeful of a recall to the regional team, following the recent change of regime and appointment of a fresh panel of selectors.

Newly appointed Cricket West Indies (CWI) president Ricky Skerritt announced several changes to the administration on Thursday.  Robert Haynes was named to replace Courtney Browne as chairman of selectors, with Floyd Reifer replacing Richard Pybus as interim Windies coach to name a few.  In addition, the entire panel of selectors has been dismissed.

Pybus, who led the team to a surprise win over England in the Test series and a 2-2 draw in the One Day Internationals (ODI), was expected to take the team to the World Cup.  The 31-year-old Pollard, who was previously called to the Windies squad ahead of the ICC World Cup qualifiers, was not expected to factor in the occasion. 

The Trinidadian had made himself unavailable prior to the World Cup qualifiers, after taking issue with just being given four days to respond and prior commitments to take part in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).  The player, however, continued to express an interest in continuing to represent the team and hopes the latest changes will give him another chance.

 “There has been a lot of turmoil in West Indies cricket over the last couple of years. I was blacklisted. We have seen in the last couple of weeks there’s a change. The most I can do every time I step on the cricket field is try to put runs on the board,” he said in reference to the appointment of Skerritt as CWI president.

“We have a new chairman of selectors, there’s a new president of the cricket board, and as I said you take it as it comes. There’s people there who have the job to select and whatever and let’s see how that goes. I’m 31 years old, I have cricket left in me. Gayle is still playing, he’s 39, and he’s whacking it all around.”

Pollard recently showed plenty of quality in the IPL, smashing an astounding 83 off just 31 balls for Mumbai Indians, which upstaged Gayle’s Kings XI Punjab earlier this week. 

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