Just when I was planning analyses which may help to understand the failure of the West Indies failure, the T&T Concacaf gold Cup and the mystery as to the whereabouts of the Pro League.
But honestly, the task is far too much for just one article, so let us start with comments by some of the finest cricketers who made some interesting statements which may help to restart the success of West Indies cricket.
The first is the support which was given to the current skipper Jason Holder by the former West Indian Clive Lloyd, a man who really knew what leadership was all about. I believe that Clive may have had a full career on the field and sometimes there were challenges which had confronted that brilliant squad of players. Firstly, his selection did not reach him until he proved that his reliability while at the wicket was as much as one wished a middle-order batsman. When he convinced the selectors in that direction, he was named by many as the best outfielder in the world, with his dazzling speed, clinical pickup, accurate return to the wicket and even three in a few effective medium-paced deliveries.
The leaders under which he played for some time, encouraged many high-profile persons to recognise his full worth as player and captain. The names of the players in the starting team in those days were qualitative in their own departments of the game. Which team in the world would have had a glut of fast bowling whose penetrative power could have destroyed the greatest batsmen in the world? Andy Roberts, Mike Holding, Colin croft, Malcolm Marshall, Michael Holding and Joel Garner have been dictators of the great game. Many, including myself, claimed that the skipper had very little difficulty in using strategy when these guys bowled. His quiet personality and safe hands left us all with the fact that the entire success story was based more upon the destruction the “demons” were naturally capable of doing to opponents.
However, time has changed and the experienced former captain is able to sit at the viewing table to assess and the comment which brought some doubt to me was that he felt that Jason Holder has been doing well enough as a captain and should be kept. I then admit that my observation of the current captain did not prove his leadership, and more than that, the experience which was credited to Holder could not be justified. He had a long spell as captain and while his batting and bowling had improved on the way, the proof of his knowledge was not comparable with his playing performance.
I often judge leaders by listening to reasons why they did well or why they failed. The friendly captain, when asked the questions, just reiterated that the batters must bat better, the bowlers must bowl better line and length and the players must take the catches. My heavens, those are exactly why and when the skipper’s direct advice to his players must come with the technical practice in the nets, the tactical discussion with regard to the deficiencies of their opponents and look forward to the implementation of these bits of that advice in the upcoming matches.
If he ever starts to do same, then we may recognise the statement made by the former great captain Lloyd and at the same time, enjoy the benefits of the new man.