'Forget the egos and focus on fixing WI cricket' -- Grange
Sports Minister Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange has described the West Indies senior men’s cricket team as a cultural heritage that is in danger and needs protection.
Grange suggested, too, that "it is time to forget the egos, get over ourselves and focus on fixing West Indies cricket.”
“There is enough blame to go around. Let us end the blame game and show our commitment to eliminating the problems that prevent West Indies men from consistently producing good results,” she suggested.
“We must all remember that for our people, cricket is not just a game. It is part of our heritage. It is part of who we are," she added.
Addressing the St Catherine Cricket Association recent awards ceremony, the sports minister made it clear she has no plans to withdraw her support from the West Indies senior men’s team, but said a string of poor performances recently is cause for concern.
Bangladesh completed a series sweep against the West Indies in the recent two test series.
Both contests end within three days.
“West Indies cricket, the men’s game, is in a time of intense difficulty and a proud part of our heritage — our cricket — is in danger. And it needs protection,” said Grange.
“Let me say, straight up, that I am a lifelong supporter of West Indies cricket. I cannot think of a reason to ever withdraw my support from the West Indies. The Windies represent us. They are a part of who we are. So you know exactly how I felt when I saw the recent results against Bangladesh,” she added.
The sports minister drew a contrast between the performance of the men’s team and the women’s team.
The women’s team had a strong showing in the recent T-20 World Cup.
They were eliminated at the semi-final stage after they were defeated by eventual champions Australia.
“Why do the women look so good — even without adequate support? And why aren’t the men doing better? Is it leadership? Is it talent? Is it commitment?” Grange questioned.
The sports minister says she is satisfied that Jamaica’s cricket programme is “at a good place and urged all stakeholders in West Indies cricket to “come together to protect the people’s game.”