24th August 2014
Quick Singles – news round-up
Recent events in Caribbean Cricket & beyond.
The CPL was finally decided today, 8 days after its rain-affected conclusion. The competition’s Cricket Tournament Committee rejected the Guyana Amazon Warriors’ protest, although CPL2 may yet linger on, with the CTC and CPL Management offering “no objection to the matter being referred to the ICC.” Amazon Warriors coach, Roger Harper is disappointed, but the Barbados Tridents are the winners and, so too it seems, are St Kitts.
Most of the Caribbean’s major cricket columnists went into print this weekend to give their view on the exit of Ottis Gibson, his possible successor and the direction Richard Pybus is taking West Indies cricket. Keith Holder criticised the WICB for its poor public relations handling of the news; Ron Shillingford thought the timing of Gibson’s departure “was a little bizarre”; Leighton Levy felt Gibson’s legacy “was one of abject failure”; respected sports psychologist, Rudi Webster explained why Gibson failed; while Roland Butcher on the ‘Line & Length’ show defended Gibson, arguing the abysmal timing of the West Indies’ tour of India derailed the team. He added that while Gibson won some off-field battles, he ultimately lost the war.
Colin Croft asked “who wants this job badly enough?”; while Tony Cozier bemoaned the failing system which has resulted in a dearth of quality Caribbean coaches to select a successor from. Fazeer Mohammed observed: “In such an environment, and in the continued absence of any structure, does it really matter who is the head coach?” Mickey Arthur is the main name doing the rounds, although Ireland coach, Phil Simmons and Kent coach, Jimmy Adams (interviewed last month on ESPN Cricinfo) have also been suggested.
A Barbados Today editorial accused West Indies cricket of losing its soul; while Jamoz Senior wondered if the steps being taken by the WICB are in the right direction; and Vinode Mamchan reported that Richard Pybus believes the new franchising system for regional cricket will make players more coachable.
With the West Indies winning the 1st and 2nd ODIs v Bangladesh, the visitors are already falling back on the cliched ‘playing for pride’ position. Bangladeshi captain, Mushfiqur Rahim questioned his players’ efforts and desire after the 2nd ODI, although Man of the Match, Sunil Narine felt Bangladesh’s hapless batsmen were victims of the conditions. He spoke to the media after the second victory, while a jubilant match-winner, Kieron Pollard fronted up after the much tougher first win. Pollard’s mature innings and recent impressive captaincy of the Barbados Tridents has seen him spoken of as WI captaincy material by Desmond Haynes. Current ODI skipper, Dwayne Bravo spoke confidently ahead of the series, and again today on the eve of the 3rd game.
The WICB announced the squads for the final ODI in St Kitts and Wednesday’s single T20, which sees a return of the big-hitting Andre Russell, but no place for the injured leg-spinner Samuel Badree. Bangladeshi spinner, Sohag Gazi is facing his own challenges, having been reported for a suspect action after the 2nd ODI.
Elsewhere, the Jamaica Observer reported the death of the great West Indian umpire, Douglas Sang Hue. Alvin Kallicharran commented on his passing, and recalled that he was the umpire at the centre of the Tony Greig run-out controversy of 1974. Greig himself recalled the incident at Lord’s in 2012.
And finally, Dwayne Smith has been signed to play for the Sydney Sixers in this year’s BBL, while former WI skipper, Daren Ganga has produced a set of instructional cricket videos, and hasn’t dismissed suggestions he may move into politics.
David Oram is the resident ‘statto’, and sometime presenter of ‘Mason & Guests’ – Voice of Barbados’ weekly cricket talk show, the leading cricket radio show in the West Indies – hosted by the Caribbean’s principal radio commentator, Andrew Mason. You can tweet me at DavidOram@colblimp1983.