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WICB must call on Lara to help our left-handers now
I have always maintained that winning is not necessarily the path to ultimate success. The comment may be misconstrued by some folks who believe that Caribbean cricket is on its way back to the top. What a serious misconception! And it has nothing to do with who is good and who is not. Analysis must be based upon the performances of the players in both teams and the quality of players who are on show.
As I wallowed in the outstanding results of the West Indies in the T20 World championships, the feeling was more patriotic than it was because we have crossed the final hurdle to the top. The superb marketing program which was given to the excitement has certainly drawn the maximum support for the team and coincidentally or not, victory came by. A few months and the Caribbean T20 championships brought more joy to Trinbagonians, who actually had a full share of the West Indies selection before and after their success.
It seemed not to matter which opponent is next and the chant from every direction was that our next hurdle, Australia will feel the brunt of our Gayle, Pollard, Powell, Sarwan and the Bravo brothers, will take apart the Aussies. Less than a month later, the picture became distorted, the super stars failed to shine and difficult times were not well handled by decision from the captain and technical staff. A convincing whipping has left the players with nothing with which to save face, and the final ball in this tournament cannot come too soon for the players.
In any other sport, there would surely have been whispers of dismissals, not necessarily from the results, but from the deficiencies which exposed weaknesses that could have been corrected in order to produce a better quality of play. Instead, the WICB has offered a new contract for Otis Gibson without even taking an objective view as to how best the coaching aspect of the game could be improved. I am not casting aspersions at the coach, simply because I have always been of the belief that cricket needs more attention from a coaching staff and because of the individuality of the skills in the game of cricket, my recommendation will always be for batting and bowling especially must have specialists with which to work.
Funnily enough, the WICB will be the first to agree with the suggestion, as they have brought numerous foreign experts to work with our players. With the number of left handers in and around the West indies team, would it not be appropriate to have the former world’s best batsman, (who is also left handed) a Caribbean man, a master athlete with good communications skills, an astute student of the game, and a role model for all West Indian people, to guide the destiny of our talented left handers, present and future International prospects. Brian Lara should have been an automatic choice for working with the batters, not only by what he can tell them about the details, but he probably can still show them by examples.
Call him now, before one of the developing countries lay their hands on huge financial funding to lure him to the benefit of their own players. The manner of dismissals in the current series leaves much to be desired, especially with the top line batters such as Gayle, Sarwan, and Pollard. The same approach can be used in order to take the talented, but inexperienced spin bowlers, to another level. The natural talent is imbedded in the chosen ones, but the next step requires the methods to be utilised. Call on Lance Gibbs. I suppose that our next opponents Zimbabwe will provide very little to expose our problems which were capitalised upon by the Australians, and the expected victory will again bring that false image of heading to the top in world Cricket. We tend to live in a false world when it comes to sport and this concept must change quickly.
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