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WICB says no to free movement in WI cricket
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) recently adopted a number of proposals sent in by cricket operations director Richard Pybus and the only one they struck down was his idea of having regional players move freely among regional cricket teams in the Regional Four-Day tournament.
The Englishman Pybus who was recently brought into the post had suggested that foreign players be allowed to play for other countries despite not being a citizen of that country. This idea would have taken the cricket down the same road as the Limacol Caribbean Premier League (CPL)T20, where players from across the region could represent any country that shows an interest in them.
According to an official of the WICB : “While we understand the reasoning for Pybus suggesting that we allow free movement of players amongst the regional team, we are cognisant of the fact that countries want to retain their identity.”
“Pybus made the recommendation after studying the current state of West Indies cricket. The standard of regional cricket is not very high and this has been blamed for the demise of the West Indies team.
“A further look into the structure of the tournament revealed that it is too short and there is expected to be an expansion of the Regional Four-Day tournament next season.
“Also, the standard of some of the teams was way too low and this led to many one-sided games which is not good for the tournament. By allowing players that free movement, teams would be beefed up and this would lead to better quality cricket, which would lead to better players coming through for the West Indies team.”
The official added: “The idea was discussed by the executive of the WICB, which as you know has representatives from all the territories in the Caribbean and they overwhelmingly objected to this idea. Some of the guys were also saying that with the national identities lost, the already low turnout at First Class games will be even lower and this would work against the game as well.
“It was a case of six of one and half a dozen of the other. In the end while it was generally agreed that the move would increase the competitiveness and quality of play, the national identities of the countries took precedence.”
Only this weekend, it was announced that the name T&T would be taken out of the T&T Red Steel that campaigns in the Limacol CPLT20 tournament because there were players on the team that did not come from this country.