Sat | Jan 21, 2017

Roberts bats for Garner

Published:Sunday | February 8, 2015 | 12:00 AMJermaine Lannaman
Garner
File Sir Andy Roberts
WICB president Dave Cameron
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West Indies fast bowling great, Sir Andy Roberts, believes the decision by Joel 'Big Bird' Garner to challenge Whycliffe 'Dave' Cameron for the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) presidency is the right one.

Garner, a former Test teammate of Roberts in the 1970s and 1980s, and president of the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA), is set to challenge Cameron on March 7 during the regional body's annual general meeting in Jamaica.

"I am happy to hear that Garner has put himself up for position of president. It is about time that someone takes the presidency from Cameron," said Roberts, shortly after participating in the third annual Caribbean Premier League Twenty20 draft last Thursday at the Terra Nova Hotel in St Andrew.

"He (Cameron) was never my choice to be there in the first place, and his behaviour and practices since have only worsened my position."

Elected 7-5 during the WICB's last voting annual general meeting in 2013, Cameron has since gone on to, among other things, introduce a longer, more professional four-day cricket tournament last September.

However, the withdrawal of the players from the West Indies' tour of India last month, and a subsequent US$42 million debt have provided fodder for his critics, who believe that he could have handled the situation better.

"The whole India situation was a nightmare," Roberts said. "Things should have never been allowed to escalate in the manner in which they did. It is a travesty, and as the leader, the buck stops with him (Cameron)."

"West Indies cricket needs a more competent and respected leader, someone who can easily galvanise the support of the entire region, and I believe Joel fits that bill easily," added the 64-year-old Antiguan.

Roberts joins CARICOM prime ministerial sub-committee on cricket member, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonzalves of St Vincent and the Grenadines, who has also come out against the candidacy of Cameron.

Cameron, of Jamaica, has been nominated by the Guyana Cricket Board and will enter the contest with Windward Islands Cricket Board of Control president Emmanuel Nanthan, once again his vice-presidential partner.

Sixty-four-year-old Barbadian Garner, who has been nominated by the BCA, is set to have Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board director Baldath Mahabir as his running mate.

The Jamaica Cricket Association's board of directors have voted to support the candidacy of Garner, while the Leeward Islands Cricket Association is set to make a decision this weekend.