No more long talk
No one, not even the most ardent supporter of West Indies cricket can say now, after the woeful display over the last four months by the regional senior team, that there is no need for some decisive actions.
What has unfolded from the Cricket World Cup in England to the recent series against India, places us at the foot of the ladder in world cricket.
This column would be categorical and say that there is little talent which exists among our senior cricketers, who are vested with the responsibilities to represent the people of the Caribbean in international cricket.
It is not just the results that are worrying, but the lack of grit, fight and ability to make adjustments to one’s game, at a given juncture, is the defining factor of the West Indies players’ status.
The many deficiencies of our players though, impact on the outcomes of the matches.
Since May 31, when the West Indies played their first match of the world cup versus Pakistan, they have featured in 17 matches.
In the wins column is two, and these were in the World Cup, as they were victorious against Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Against India, in the three formats, West Indies has won none, with one match in the 20/20 series rained out.
India thus won the T/20’s 2-0 (with the other rained out); the ODIs 3-0 and the tests 2-0.
To the eye, our team looked like a bunch of school boys playing against some big men, as they were clueless about the high quality stuff which the Indians served up.
The lone consolation for West Indies fans who lived through the glory days is that they had a good dose of others’ feelings, when the mighty West Indies was destroying opponents at will.
The reality though, is that for the past two decades and a half, West Indian fans have endured the pain and despair of having to see the senior team slip from world beaters, to be the thrashing boys of others.
There have been several papers, commissions, fact finding retreats and the like, all with an aim of reshaping and changing the fortunes of the team.
But staying with the current, heads have to roll, as the results and the display of the team, are not even encouraging to say the least.
Hence, it should mean the hastened departure of Floyd Reifer as head coach of the senior team, along with his other associates in the team’s technical department.
This has to be the line of thinking of Messrs Ricky Skerritt and Dr Kishore Shallow, president and the vice-president of Cricket West Indies respectively, who immediately in being elected to their posts in March, showed then coach Richard Pybus the exit door.
Whilst Pybus was not many persons’ favourite, he, at the helm in the series of England, saw West Indies coming away with a rare feat of winning a test series against a top rated team.
In all West Indies won the test series 2-1 and had a 2-2 series draw in the ODIs.
So the tale is different under Reifer, hence he must be given the same treatment.
Likewise, current captain Jason Holder, his nice guy status aside, has not delivered as a captain either. His continuous pleas for patience with the team must not be heeded.
Under his captaincy, the West Indies has won 9 test matches, lost 17, with 5 drawn.
In the ODIs, the take is not better, as of the 86 under his charge, the regional side has won 24, but has lost 54.
Many may argue that if Holder is sacked as captain, who in the team can fill his boots?
As a matter of fact, any number can play, as the team is weak in any case, and most critical, West Indies cricket is in dire straits.
But to be fair to Holder, he has been one of the players who in the present set up, can hold his hand up with his performance.
Stripped of the responsibility of captaincy, Holder is a fixture in the team, more so as a batsman, and a bowler who can plug away, and wear opposing teams down.
As it is, Holder is the top West Indies batsman in tests on the ICC rankings, as he is at 34th.
But as we grind our teeth at what is happening with the West Indies senior team, the players are still enjoying emoluments that make them live comfortable, seemingly oblivious to what fans are enduring.
Maybe, part of Cricket West Indies “calculated strategic move”, as reasoned when Pybus was sacked, the same can be applied in this time for action.
Inclusive, is a look at all levels of cricket around the region.
The sufferings of Caribbean cricket fans have been too protracted, with any sign of relieve.