Although sporting fans may be distracted by the current 2022 Fifa World Cup in Qatar, Trinidadians in particular would not have overlooked Nicholas Pooran's resignation as West Indies white ball captain earlier this week.
While many will argue the decision was late in coming following the Windies’ embarrassing ICC T20 World Cup exit in Australia, where England copped the title, there will be mixed reactions to whether it was the best call.
This newspaper, however, lauds Mr Pooran for doing what we believe was the right thing.
Indeed, coming from a rich background of success in the tournament, where the team secured two titles, the team’s recent failure to advance out of even the playoff phase wounded West Indian pride even further.
However, facts are uncompromising and tell their own tales. After being named full-time skipper following the stunning resignation of compatriot Kieron Pollard in May, then-skipper Pooran won just four of 15 ODIs and four of 15 T20Is before their T20 World Cup humiliation. Moreover, Pooran’s batting suffered during his tenure as skipper and he also failed to show he was either a good leader of men or a brilliant tactician on the field of play.
Suffice it to say, Cricket West Indies may not have given Pooran enough time to do on-the-job training under former skipper Pollard to have a chance at success in the first instance.
In offering his resignation, Pooran said, "By stepping down now as the West Indies white-ball captain, I believe it is in the best interests of the team and for me personally, as I need to concentrate on what I can deliver to the side as a player. I desperately want us to be successful and the most value I can give to the team is through fully focusing on the role of consistently scoring runs at crucial times."
We sincerely hope Mr Pooran rebounds, since his batting and wicketkeeping skills are valuable assets to a team which will be feeling its way while searching for a return to the T20 pinnacle.
Now that Pooran has done the honourable thing, following a similar decision from coach Phil Simmons, it is time for CWI to put its house in order. This is not the first time this newspaper has used this space to make this call.
For far too long, WI coaches and skippers have been denied the best cricketing talent available due to poor board management and mishandling of players, including the divisive issue of insularity causing friction within team structures.
CWI boss Rickey Skerritt was one of the first persons to publicly express his disappointment at the team’s early T20 World Cup exit and has since set up an independent three-member team, among them West Indies world record holder Brian Lara, to do a post-mortem of what happened.
We hope, however, that this is not mere window dressing and that the CWI fully accepts that panel’s final recommendations for the rejuvenation of Windies cricket, including managerial shake-ups, if that is what it takes to return regional cricket to its place atop the world.
For now, Mr Pooran's act gives the CWI a chance to start with a clean slate.