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WICB President should be fired – Gonsalves

WICB President should be fired – Gonsalves

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Tue, Jan 27, 2015

President of the West Indies Cricket Board Wycliffe “Dave” Cameron is a regional embarrassment and should be fired, says St Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves.{{more}}

Speaking to the SUNDAY SUN at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus on Friday night, Dr Gonsalves said the best thing for West Indies cricket going forward was the immediate sacking of Cameron. He described the Jamaican’s leadership of the WICB as “poor” and “embarrassing”

The Vincentian leader and keen cricket enthusiast blamed Cameron’s “dismissive” attitude to the West Indies cricketers and also to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as the main reason that West Indies cricket was in its current predicament.

“I hope the respective boards in the territories tell him to take a break and come back at a later date, perhaps with more mature, renewed skills of leadership. I think his leadership in this regard has been extremely poor and has embarrassed us before the world,” the Prime Minister said.

He added: “I happen to know certain facts which draw me to the conclusion that it is his sole leadership that led to the premature end of the tour to India. And I believe that he bears heavy responsibility and really he should withdraw himself from any consideration for any leadership, or from his term.

“It doesn’t mean that the players ought not to have shown greater restraint in the interest of the region. But you can’t send people there [India] without a contract and then your attitude to them was that you aren’t talking to them. And his attitude also to the Indian board was quite dismissive.”

The Prime Minister was adamant that in spite of statements by Cameron and chairman of selectors Clive Lloyd on the exclusion of Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard from the squad for next month’s ICC World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, he believed they were being victimized. Cameron and Lloyd had indicated the West Indies team was “transitioning” and Pollard and Bravo had been axed for purely cricketing reasons.

“I believe both Pollard and Bravo are being victimized – I believe so. I read what Lloyd and Cameron have said, but I don’t accept what they say. And it is clear that Bravo should not be thrown off the side and certainly not Pollard, especially for the World Cup, which is just a few weeks away,” he added.

Dr Gonsalves also lashed out at any attempt by the WICB to discipline opening batsman Chris Gayle for his public criticisms of the selectors for Bravo and Pollard’s omission. Gayle had described the players’ exclusion to the South African media as “ridiculous” and questioned the direction in which West Indies cricket was headed.

The outspoken Dr Gonsalves suggested that rather than the board concentrate on Gayle’s mouthings, it should be dealing with the renewed demand by the BCCI for the near US$42 million compensation claim, following the West Indies cricketers’ abandonment of the tour to India in October last year (see accompanying story).

“He [Gayle] did not raise a question of national security. He did not raise something to subvert law and order. This is a simple comment giving an opinion. I think that is a kind of totalitarian response born out of the plantation mode of thought, which I don’t ascribe to,” he said.

Dr Gonsalves also noted he had recently spoken with Prime Minister of Grenada Keith Mitchell on the matter of CARICOM trying to work out a sensible formula with the Indian cricket authorities to deal with their claim for damages. He said it was a solution they hoped would not result in the crippling of West Indies cricket.

“And I am engaged in this matter not to help Dave Cameron, who I am satisfied is the person primarily responsible for this debacle. . . but I want to assist West Indies cricket, which is bigger than Dave Cameron. Any way I can help, I will help,” he said. (SDB Media)

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