Apr 07, 2016 Sports
Former West Indies captain Ramnaresh Sarwan has supported T20 skipper Darren Sammy and
rebuked the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) for the manner in which they continue to handle the region’s top professional cricketers.
Speaking to the media yesterday at his Fitness 53 Gym at Providence, Sarwan who played 87 Tests scoring 5,842 runs at an average of 40.01 was in full support of Sammy who blasted the West Indies Cricket Board following the Regional team victory against England in the ICC World T20 final on Sunday at Eden Gardens. West Indies also won the female title for the first time after beating three-time winners Australia by eight wickets.
Sammy at the post-match interview slammed the WICB for their shabby treatment of players and spoke about the struggles they went through prior to global showpiece.
Sarwan pointed out that these are ongoing issues, but were never clearly highlighted. “I think over the years the West Indies Board tend to do a lot of stuff and get away with it, and during the period that I have been playing we have strike a lot in trying to highlight those areas and nothing seems to be changing,” Sarwan said.
Sarwan stated that the issue is not about the money but has a lot to do with the treatment of the players. “I have experienced it; we have been in numerous times where we negotiated and I guarantee you, it is not about the money, Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo and Sammy all have big contracts with teams in the Indian Premier League, but I think it is an issue of principle as well, because you don’t want to find yourself in a situation where you under sell your players and I think that is what has been happening and the WICB keep doing it over and over… and to try to paint this picture that the players are ‘money hung’ and I strongly believe that this is not the case”, he pointed out.
“Even when we had strikes before, it was something they were trying to paint as well; they are just going to cover-up their way of managing West Indies Cricket and they (WICB) don’t want to accept that they have faults and due to the fact they feel they are untouchable…they are being very vindictive towards players, I can go through a whole list of players who they done that to most recently Dwayne and Pollard”, Sarwan went on.
“Like I have said many times before, it’s not that we’re lacking of talent, it’s a situation where we don’t have the right people managing our cricket and how long we don’t get that right I don’t think our cricket will be able to rise again. The first people to get blame are the players because that is the product you see on the field, but no one knows what is happening behind the scenes”.
Sarwan feels the best players should be given an opportunity to represent the region and a compromise should be met. “If you are going to play in a tournament when there is peak time like during the IPL and if the board do not want to pay the players the amount of money they are suppose to be earning, and they get an opportunity to play abroad why not take it. It’s not like if they are fighting for places in the team, Gayle, Sammy, Pollard and Bravo are established players so they have got to come to a compromise and not just tell players they are ineligible,” he posited.
The former West Indies captain lauded Coach Phillip Simmons. “He has West Indies cricket at heart, but was given torrid time but once he gets the support he can help to transfer West Indies cricket.”
He said that the WICB must be able to communicate better with the players because they will never know what is happening especially with those players who have travelled around the world.
Sarwan took the opportunity to congratulate Leon Johnson who led Guyana to back to back titles in the WICB professional four-day league, but stated that Guyana’s cricket are facing a number challenges. “With so much going on in West Indies cricket, we are facing a number of challenges with our cricket here and we need to sort that out as well. Based on all the information I received, the parties want to have elections but for some reason we are not and the WICB is supporting the present board without having a proper election.
Sarwan urged the Government of Guyana to find a solution to the problems and work towards it. “Cricket is just stagnant lack of sponsors and something needs to be done about it,” he concluded.
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