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WICB all about partnerships - Cameron

Published:Wednesday | May 21, 2014 | 12:00 AM
West Indies Cricket Board president Dave Cameron. - WICB Media photo

Leighton Levy, Gleaner Writer

West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) president, Dave Cameron, said they have opted to take a different approach to how things were done previously - one of partnership rather than fighting.

This was in response to former WICB CEO Ernest Hilaire, who recently expressed the view that the board lacked the boldness needed to reshape regional cricket.

"I think in West Indies cricket, we know what has to be done. What is needed is the will to make it happen and to stay the course," Hilaire said in an interview with HTS Channel 4 in Guyana. "When I got involved in West Indies cricket as CEO, there was nothing new really to be done. The plans were there, all the reports (were there). It was a question of having the fortitude to say this is the pathway forward, this is what reconstruction and reform is about and let us stick to the pathway."

But while Hilaire's tenure was fraught with conflict, especially between the West Indies Players' Association (WIPA), Cameron believes partnerships are a better way of achieving the objectives of the board.

The WICB president was speaking at yesterday's launch of the launch of the 2014 annual player awards ceremony set for June 5 at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston. At the event, held at Eden Gardens on Lady Musgrave Road, it was announced that cricketers across the region will be awarded in 12 categories and there will be two lifetime achievement awards presented at the ceremony that will be held jointly by the cricket board and the players' association.

"Look at what we have been able to accomplish in the last year," Cameron said. "We have a players' association, players recognising us as the body, and we are working together so to actually say that I can't agree," he said of Hilaire's comments.

"However, it is all about perception, and my view is how you act triggers a reaction, and so, our approach has been conciliatory. So rather than the WICB imposing its will on the respective territories, we have said to the territories 'you need to get better'. These are the standards; you need to employ these standards and give us a better product and we in turn will return resources to you."

Add value

Cameron said the partnerships being forged by the board will bring added value to West Indies cricket, which is currently valued at US$750 million and currently supports several industries across the region. Improving the value of the cricket, he says, will add value to these industries.

Former Prime Minister P.J. Patterson will be guest speaker at the awards dinner, which will also be attended by members of the New Zealand touring party that will be here for a three-Test series, beginning with the first Test starting on June 8 at Sabina Park. The match will be the 100th Test of Chris Gayle's career and both Cameron and WIPA president and CEO, Wavell Hinds, said something special would be done to mark the occasion for the big-hitting Jamaican. At the match itself Cameron said Gayle will receive a special honour.