Mon | Aug 21, 2017

My plan for reviving WI cricket

Published:Tuesday | May 2, 2017 | 5:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Our cricketers' selfishness, indiscipline, litigation, sabotaged tours and growing disrespect for authority have been debilitating West Indies cricket.

For more than three decades, the players have spinelessly taken the once most dominant force in international cricket to such ignominy, no eyebrow is raised anymore at the inability of our cricket team to win two consecutive games, regardless of format or opposition. Cricket, lovely cricket (West Indies brand) is chronically ill. Sick leave from international cricket beckons.

Ironically, we have an oversupply of modern cricket venues, but no fans in the stands. Fans are frustrated by the antics of feckless players (losers) who respect only the big bucks on offer these days. There is no place for preserving cricket legacy or pride (civic, racial or national).

The challenge is daunting. It requires all stakeholders, including the West Indies Cricket Board, past and present players, politicians and commentators to powwow, then collaborate to heal our cricket. A purgative-type workshop should conclude with a strategic plan to recapture the glory days of West Indies cricket.

The plan should include:

- Establishing two First-World-type cricket academies with the least viable two sports venues to strengthen our professional cricketers.

- Promoting and marketing our cricket again as a family sport; more incentivising such as scholarships and cash grants initially to attract more bright young men to the game; training of cricket broadcasters; also making cricket broadcasts more accessible;

- Increasing support for feeder territories to West Indies cricket; developing and marketing an investment-type plan to finance our cricket programmes;

- Reigniting the flames of civic, racial and national pride within our players to grow a more robust team spirit among them. Then, playing for big quick bucks should not be the only reason for playing the game.

BARRIE WALKER

vba@cwjamaica.com