It is so timely that there is a suggestion that the leadership for the Presidency of the CWI has begun. Without causing the constant problems and negatives which have emanated out of West Indies cricket, I am joining the discussion regarding any thought of a change in the next general meeting.
The name of Ricky Skerritt sounds a step in the right direction in which a renewed approach of an improved administrative competence seems timely. In the midst of what is appearing some semblance of improvement albeit without consistency, the engine room which has supplied the management’s expansive responsibility, must not make similar mistakes of the “outgoing regime” where failed decisions have lent a hand towards every department of the institution.
Just in case one may belief that my suggestion to bring Ricky into the leader’s chair is said on the basis of his management of the West Indies team for five years in the early 2000-2004, “manifesto” is already appearing to be evidence of his previous workload. He had to communicate with some fine players and did so without any of the problems which have been in existence over the past few years.
I accept the honesty of his promises and having had informal discussions with this fine gentleman, it is easy to accept his promise to bring West Indies Cricket standard back to the good old days. His professional contribution in various areas of life in the Caribbean can send some semblance of good dialogue with his fellow employers, some of whom may well be capable of covering every department, such as marketing, coaching, development, managing funds which would demonstrate better value spending within the various aspects of the game.
His promise to choose the selection process and allow it to flow from the grassroots teaching program through to the technical and tactical coaching which seems to be the game’s most vulnerable deficiency. There is no doubt in the minds of those who have followed the results of the current players, to witness some naturally potential youngsters who are approaching a trial and error method during the course of their efforts to step up to World Class.
I make no apologies to say that the rush for foreign coaches to be employed to coach the West Indies, was really a disadvantage to the foreigners, especially as they did not have a high quality of their personal participation of the game. We know that coaches do not have to be great players, but, to those who do not have Test Class status, but they are well short of recognising mistakes, analysing their corrective manoeuvres and most of all, their ability to acquire the communication skills to players, whose background in the region of their birth has already left them with the attractive start which got them from national to regional status.
I expect that coaching is vital for progress and the criteria needed for improvement from potential to the highest stage to which the experts can bring them will guide the path to the correct persons to lead our West Indian cricketers. Some folks do not realise that respect is a vital ingredient for a coach, which includes the attitude of the players, not only in the dressing rooms before and after practice or match days.
Mental preparation is presently the weakest area, simply because our players are involved in three different formats of the game, each of which calls for variables when it comes to planning their innings. The basic fundamentals of each department of the game are different because of the length of the match, which calls for adjustments in each department. At another level, the leadership role of the President must not be viewed as the chief cook and bottle washer. This is where Ricky Skerrit will be inviting qualified personnel to handle the various departments by going in search of the ones who know what is needed.
The process of democracy within the system, and sometimes dialogue among the affiliated countries in the Caribbean, must be the basis upon which a reliable administration must operate. May I humbly suggest that the business sector, be encouraged enough to invest their money and bring to the table that businessman’s desire which brings success to their investments.
The region has never been short of qualified personnel in West Indian cricket, and while the history of the late Allan Rae, John Goddard, Clyde Walcott, Calvin Wilkin, Sir Wes Hall, Jeffrey Stollmeyer, Berkley Gaskin has taken the level of cricket on and off the field, some folks who have not had the experienced of understanding the simple but unusual approach to being leader of the Great game. It will not surprise me that there will be those who would prefer to personally criticise the ones who may wish to serve. That is the third world process of pulling down the good to elevate the incompetent.
This is the appropriate period which the people of the region can make a great effort to bring to the fore a new look concept of leadership, where representatives who have the qualifications to lead in every area of development in our Cricket. Finally, it will be much more of the manner in which these persons can express themselves by putting their “manifestos” during their period of canvassing. They must travel around and speak with the countries cricket Boards as to what is best for each country.
Let us not be fooled, the present regime has failed by providing a confused state of the original game hoping that the shorter versions will bring the entertainment to a different type of audience. The various governments of the region must be an integral part of major decisions, simply because they have always been contributors in different ways, such as bypassing taxes from CWI or any other government.
Let every step towards the day of the general elections become dedicated efforts from those who honestly wish to bring us back to the top of world Cricket.