GEORGETOWN – Former Test captain and stroke-maker, Ramnaresh Sarwan, has praised Cricket West Indies president, Ricky Skerritt, for making the “hard decisions” since coming to office a year ago, and wants to see him continue the roll-out of his agenda.
Skerritt, a former tourism minister in St Kitts and Nevis, stunned three-term incumbent Dave Cameron last March in elections in Jamaica, to assume the top position in CWI.
“When he came in it was a difficult time, not only the financial challenges they had to deal with but so far you got to give him the props where someone deserves props,” Sarwan said.
“He has been doing a good job and has had to make hard decisions and it’s good to see when you have to make harsh decisions you make them in the right way.
“So I would like to see him continue in the path they are going so in the coming months they could get some of the things they have been working [on] and they have promised come to fruition.”
Skerritt took controversial decisions within a month of assuming the presidency, axing then West Indies men’s head coach Richard Pybus and his staff, and replacing the entire selection panel at all levels in a bold shake-up.
After overseeing a failed World Cup campaign in June, all-rounder Jason Holder was subsequently replaced as one-day captain by Kieron Pollard who also assumed responsibility of the Twenty20 unit from Carlos Brathwaite.
Sarwan was one of the former Test players asked by CWI to work with the men’s side as a consultant, when he helped with preparation for the tour of Ireland last May.
“My role with the West Indies team was more as a mentor, to offer advice to the players and help them the best way I could,” said the former right-hander who averaged 40 from 87 Tests with 15 hundreds and 42 in 181 One-Day Internationals.
“I was a kind of a mentor to the players and tried my best to assist them in any technical ways and with any shortcomings where I thought they could improve in.”
A prolific run-scorer at the first class level where he amassed over 13 000 runs with 33 hundreds, Sarwan said it was his hope that the domestic championship could be improved along with the facilities.
“I have not really looked at [the] regional [level] in a while, but based on the feedback I am getting is that the standard has dropped a bit,” he explained.
“Like I have always said before, once you have a very sound and strong first class level you would obviously be able to go on to make the West Indies team and to be better equipped to perform at the International level. I think that is one area we have to look at.
“Hopefully we would be able to have better facilities in the Caribbean so that players will improve and be ready to play at the highest level.”