Windies coach Simmons courts controversy
West Indies head coach Phil Simmons on Friday courted controversy when he slammed "interference from outside" as the reason for the omission of Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard from the one-day squad, for the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka.
The 52-year-old Simmons, who took charge of the squad back in March following the International Cricket Council's Cricket World Cup, said he, chairman of selectors Clive Lloyd, and captain Jason Holder, were all in favour of the Trinidadian duo's re-inclusion but "people" had used their "influence" to keep them out of the squad.
In a candid interview with reporters on the final day of the West Indies camp at the 3Ws Oval, Simmons castigated such interference as "wrong" and said it had robbed the region of its best ODI squad.
However, he did not say who the interference was coming from.
"I think it's disappointing from the fact that I haven't got the best 50-over ODI squad that we can select in the Caribbean," an irate Simmons said.
"The chairman, Mr Lloyd, he came and he gave an exceptional speech saying that he thinks it is time they are back in the squad and he gave exceptional reasons for them being back in the squad.
"Unfortunately, when we went into the selection [meeting] we lost it 3-2. Him and myself - the captain doesn't have a vote in this - but the captain also gave his views as to why they need to be back."
"It is wrong and I don't like it and that is my beef with the selection of the ODI team."
Bravo was sacked as captain, and along with Pollard, controversially axed for the ODI series in South Africa last January, and also overlooked for the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.