West Indies March 6, 2010

Gimme the Windies of old

There's been enough talk of the decline of the game in the Caribbean
38


Hey that's not Viv! © DigicelCricket.com
Brooks LaTouche Photography

 

Chris Gayle walks slow but he talks fast. In fact, he gabbles like a man for whom vocalisation is a chore that gets in the way of his sitting down time. In the time it would take Ricky Ponting to drawl his opening, “Ah look,” Big Chris has already answered the question, outlined the extent of his disappointment, explained what the team are going to do to put things right, ordered his taxi back to the hotel and booked his flight to Jamaica.

So an interview with Mr Gayle is an occasion for intense concentration and possibly some lip-reading. Take this from his post match interview with Ian Bishop on Thursday.

“…intheendtherewegotofftoagoodstartahbutagainyouknowfalteredinthemiddleandyouknow crucialrunoutagainandthenyouknowsomeyouknowIdon’tknowhowtodescribethewordbutahmyou knowsometerribledisplaysofbattingdownattheendthere.”

Quite so, Chris, I agree entirely. The Bish, wearing his best studious frown pretended to understand all that and asked the West Indian captain if these last two performances had surprised him.

“…ifwe’renotgoingtolearnwe’restillgoingtogetbeatenandifwecontinuelikethisZimbabwewillbeatus fivenilaswellsoahmnoexcusetheyplayedbettercricketbutatthesametimeahmlikeIsaiditsaterrible displayandsomeimmaturecricket.”

Hmm. I think I got it, but to be on the safe side, I recorded it and played it back in super slow-mo. And I found that when I studied this verbal avalanche more closely, I could clearly identify the words “terrible” and “immature”. Now these are adjectives that do not usually feature in the post-match airtime filling chinwag. It slowly dawned on me that Captain Chris was not just flapping his gums. He was delivering a dressing-down, a tongue-lashing, what is known in Premier League circles as the hairdryer treatment. And you know what, he was absolutely right.

At 99 for 0, 125 for 1 and needing five runs with four balls to go, they really, really should have won. Instead, when this six-hour session of pass-the-initiative ended, it was the smaller contestants who were left clutching the prize. Yes, Zimbabwe were plucky, they were busy between the wickets and in Ray Price they have a bowler who is sure to have a bat brandished at him before the year is out. But West Indies really, really should have won.

Instead we have another “giant-killing” story, although, frankly it isn’t much of a fairy tale. I’m not sure the fable of David and Goliath would have caught on quite so well if the Philistine had been five-foot six with diamond-studded earrings, an iffy javelin technique and a tendency to go to pieces under pressure. I don’t want to hear about plucky little outsiders toppling West Indies, because frankly anyone can do that, indeed, anyone has.

No, the story I want to hear is of the resurgence of West Indian cricket. Now their decline has had its compensations. The Caribbean game of pinning the tail of blame on the donkey of failure has helped fill many a damp afternoon in the commentary box. There is so much mileage in it, far more than the never-fascinating Tendulkar versus Bradman squabble. We’ve heard all the reasons: baseball, football, basketball, the ill-discipline of youth, the WICB, the WIPA, Allen Stanford, aliens, global warming. There is no end to the possibilities.

And there may even be some people who are pleased that the old days are gone, the same types who spent the 1980s clutching their handbags and tut-tutting about nasty short-pitched bowling.

But so what if the occasional tourist got their nose re-shaped. Mike Gatting, for example, lost none of his boyish good looks and gained a war story to tell his grandchildren. I’m tired of watching this third-rate imitation of the West Indies. I want cricket to be like it used to be, I want to see Viv Richards lashing the ball over midwicket, not Dwayne Smith closing his eyes and missing a straight one.

So have at them, Chris and if you need any more adjectives to hurl in the dressing room, I’d be more than happy to help you out.

Andrew Hughes is a writer currently based in England

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Neil Morrison on April 7, 2010, 21:39 GMT

    Andrew Hughes is the Neville Cardus of today's cricket journalists, period.

    nemo

  • Zoheb on March 13, 2010, 20:17 GMT

    haha...great article...

  • Matt on March 8, 2010, 22:14 GMT

    To be fair though, england couldn't really give a monkeys at that point, what with having just won the ashes and all..

  • Tim on March 8, 2010, 14:11 GMT

    Ive been reading these stories for more than 10 years. The difference now to say 7 or 8 years ago is that finally there is some talent in the team (although very little depth - hence a few injuries will decimate their chances). The future batting is looking particularly promising. The emergence of these talented cricketers though is entirely down to luck as the WICB attempt at managing cricket in the region is laughable. The recent FC competition is a prime example - the Caribbean, weather-wise, perhaps has the most available days cricket out of all the test nations - yet the first class season lasted just 6 games, timed to coincide with an overseas tour! Bizarley (in an attempt at innovation!!!!) the games also took place in seemingly random locations meaning each nation had just one home game! Imagine Yorkshire or NSW having just one game at home each year. Windies will never reach their potential until the WICB is properly overhauled!

  • Dave on March 8, 2010, 4:39 GMT

    Donald, you seem to forget that prior to beating WI 5-0, Australia had beaten Pakistan 5-0, India 4-2 in India with a second-string team, won the Champions trophy, and beaten England 6-1.They remain, as they have been for more than a decade, the unrivalled kings of one-day cricket.

  • Oldalbert on March 7, 2010, 13:15 GMT

    I the 1st test series i ever watched was England vs West Indies at the age of 12 in 1991. The West Indies team then:

    Simmons Haynes Richardson Hooper Richards Logie Dujon Marshall Bishop Ambrose Walsh

    WI team now...... Gayle Hinds Sarwan Pollard Chanderpaul Morton Bravo Ramdin + 4 'fast' bowlers who couldnt hit the stumps if there were 6 of them! I think ive proved my point lol!

  • TGP on March 7, 2010, 8:41 GMT

    I have no problem in paying them the kind of money like the other teams pay their players, but WI players must show that they can produce and compete at every level. Here is how I will structure it with some incentives included: - The bowlers would get paid for the number of dot ball bowled and wickets taken - The batters would paid for the number of runs scored and time spent at the wicket - the fielders would get paid for the runs saved and catches taken. Everyone is welcome to add to this business plan.

  • TGP on March 7, 2010, 8:40 GMT

    Here is my formula for bringing back the pride in IW cricket. First I see Cricket like all other sports, it is a business and should be treated as such. In terms of management I would hire a team that has knowledge of the game and the vision of where WI cricket should be in order to bring back the integrity and respect that we once had. Clive Lloyd would be the president. I have no doubt he would appoint the right personnel in every key management position in order to produce a winning team. The players must see this as their jobs and must show some seriousness about it. Yes I know the game has changed but the fundamental aspect forever remains; that is discipline and mental toughness. "Like Gayle showed today in the 2nd ODI – I need that kind of consistency from the skipper"

  • nicolette francis on March 7, 2010, 6:12 GMT

    Congrats Chris today's effort was great, Narsingh u lived up to what was expected of you for a while now but let me say something about that game thursday i went to my DR friday morning he said i was suffering from ACUTESTRESS, i said DR i have no problem, he asked are u sure ? ,i said yes but i was watching WI lost to zimbabwe he said well i think that's it , so i leave my DR office and went to my lawyer's office to file a suit against WI Selectors,Captain his troops.

  • Praveen on March 7, 2010, 5:52 GMT

    You are right. It is pathetic watching WI Team these days. When I started following cricket (1978), WI was on getting to the Top of the world. I remember pleading with my Dad to take me to Cricket Match(I think that was early 80's). Why? Well Greenidge, Haynes, Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd, Logie, Dujon, Holding, Marshall, Roberts, Garner.... Amazing group of gutsy players. What could be better for a cricket crazy youngster? Right now we just don't see the passion to win. Brian Lara struggled with mediocre Team for a decade.

    I don't know whether Windies can ever come back. But yes is they do I will support them proudly. I am still a fan.

  • Neil Morrison on April 7, 2010, 21:39 GMT

    Andrew Hughes is the Neville Cardus of today's cricket journalists, period.

    nemo

  • Zoheb on March 13, 2010, 20:17 GMT

    haha...great article...

  • Matt on March 8, 2010, 22:14 GMT

    To be fair though, england couldn't really give a monkeys at that point, what with having just won the ashes and all..

  • Tim on March 8, 2010, 14:11 GMT

    Ive been reading these stories for more than 10 years. The difference now to say 7 or 8 years ago is that finally there is some talent in the team (although very little depth - hence a few injuries will decimate their chances). The future batting is looking particularly promising. The emergence of these talented cricketers though is entirely down to luck as the WICB attempt at managing cricket in the region is laughable. The recent FC competition is a prime example - the Caribbean, weather-wise, perhaps has the most available days cricket out of all the test nations - yet the first class season lasted just 6 games, timed to coincide with an overseas tour! Bizarley (in an attempt at innovation!!!!) the games also took place in seemingly random locations meaning each nation had just one home game! Imagine Yorkshire or NSW having just one game at home each year. Windies will never reach their potential until the WICB is properly overhauled!

  • Dave on March 8, 2010, 4:39 GMT

    Donald, you seem to forget that prior to beating WI 5-0, Australia had beaten Pakistan 5-0, India 4-2 in India with a second-string team, won the Champions trophy, and beaten England 6-1.They remain, as they have been for more than a decade, the unrivalled kings of one-day cricket.

  • Oldalbert on March 7, 2010, 13:15 GMT

    I the 1st test series i ever watched was England vs West Indies at the age of 12 in 1991. The West Indies team then:

    Simmons Haynes Richardson Hooper Richards Logie Dujon Marshall Bishop Ambrose Walsh

    WI team now...... Gayle Hinds Sarwan Pollard Chanderpaul Morton Bravo Ramdin + 4 'fast' bowlers who couldnt hit the stumps if there were 6 of them! I think ive proved my point lol!

  • TGP on March 7, 2010, 8:41 GMT

    I have no problem in paying them the kind of money like the other teams pay their players, but WI players must show that they can produce and compete at every level. Here is how I will structure it with some incentives included: - The bowlers would get paid for the number of dot ball bowled and wickets taken - The batters would paid for the number of runs scored and time spent at the wicket - the fielders would get paid for the runs saved and catches taken. Everyone is welcome to add to this business plan.

  • TGP on March 7, 2010, 8:40 GMT

    Here is my formula for bringing back the pride in IW cricket. First I see Cricket like all other sports, it is a business and should be treated as such. In terms of management I would hire a team that has knowledge of the game and the vision of where WI cricket should be in order to bring back the integrity and respect that we once had. Clive Lloyd would be the president. I have no doubt he would appoint the right personnel in every key management position in order to produce a winning team. The players must see this as their jobs and must show some seriousness about it. Yes I know the game has changed but the fundamental aspect forever remains; that is discipline and mental toughness. "Like Gayle showed today in the 2nd ODI – I need that kind of consistency from the skipper"

  • nicolette francis on March 7, 2010, 6:12 GMT

    Congrats Chris today's effort was great, Narsingh u lived up to what was expected of you for a while now but let me say something about that game thursday i went to my DR friday morning he said i was suffering from ACUTESTRESS, i said DR i have no problem, he asked are u sure ? ,i said yes but i was watching WI lost to zimbabwe he said well i think that's it , so i leave my DR office and went to my lawyer's office to file a suit against WI Selectors,Captain his troops.

  • Praveen on March 7, 2010, 5:52 GMT

    You are right. It is pathetic watching WI Team these days. When I started following cricket (1978), WI was on getting to the Top of the world. I remember pleading with my Dad to take me to Cricket Match(I think that was early 80's). Why? Well Greenidge, Haynes, Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd, Logie, Dujon, Holding, Marshall, Roberts, Garner.... Amazing group of gutsy players. What could be better for a cricket crazy youngster? Right now we just don't see the passion to win. Brian Lara struggled with mediocre Team for a decade.

    I don't know whether Windies can ever come back. But yes is they do I will support them proudly. I am still a fan.

  • jay on March 7, 2010, 5:47 GMT

    I like when my fellow wi play, they have some good talents and have to work on those, they need patient. Malcom Marshal said enough of money is not put to developed cricket in the wi by the icc i believe Gayle, Shiv, Sarwan, Bravo, Deo, Barat, Ramdin, Pollard, Fideal, Jermone, Roach,Rapaul, and Big Ben, and a few more good talents with determanation and guts can beats any team, be patient and take time when batting, good luck for the upcoming searies...good luck

  • Delin on March 7, 2010, 4:38 GMT

    No one the WI team thinks cricket and understand what is happening to them

  • Bhuwan Adhikari on March 7, 2010, 4:36 GMT

    i m die hard fan of west indies for last 20 years but things never change senior players as Chris , Shiva and Sarvan should play extensive cricket for more three years at least for country rather than their benefits and contract , ex players should coach the team , bowler should be develop like jerome taylor , all rounder should be developed , please do not collapse for nothing

  • Trini on March 7, 2010, 1:49 GMT

    The problem starts with the selectors and the Coach/captain Chris, if they are part of the selection process. The selectors cause the players to not play freely because they are constantly under fear of being dropped from the team. They are not given enough chances for continuity to progress. Case in point, Darren Bravo,with a graet potential to bat, was dropped after only one game last week. This happens all the time with younger bowlers and batsmen thus breaking their confidence.

  • rohan d. singh on March 7, 2010, 1:26 GMT

    westindies need to wake up, the selection of the team is very poor. it is time W.I. do away with some of the players.here is my list players to be axe. d. ramdin, not a bad keeper, but not contributing with the bat.if the team need ten runs to win a game with ramdin at the wicket you know W. I. is going to lose. i am sorry d. bernard is not an international player, so too is n. miller, a. flecther, r morton, W.I. need to invest in some of our young cricketers. k. brathewaite, j. holder, are two of the players that come to mind,

  • diggyb on March 6, 2010, 22:46 GMT

    Bangladesh will soon beat England , i want to see how Andrew would write Cook's comment then!!

  • diggyb on March 6, 2010, 22:43 GMT

    i dont see anything wrong with Gayle's speech and or speed of speech and quite frankly dont see why that had to be the 'building block' of Andrew's article. Gayle's words were clearly understood by the people who were meant to understand it ( West Indies cricketers and the West Indian fans). None the less we all know that this team is nothing compared to the 1980's...NOW CAN WE MOVE ON!! from the mid 1990's who do you think were at the helm ( coaching) of the WI team? people like the late great Malcom Marshall, Roger Harper, Jeff Dujon , and who do you think still advises and consults with the team?? the same 'GLORY DAYS' players ent it!why aren't we producing the same results as in the 1980's? 1. the players back then were more 'naturally intelligent' then those now, 2. they dont recognise that the 'Talents' have changed but the system remained the same.WICB has been the down fall of Windies cricket, we have not done enough to develop our 'talents' from grass root level.

  • Stephen on March 6, 2010, 22:17 GMT

    We have to train our guys how to think,instead of going back to the drawing board we should take them back to the chalk board. Only the West Indies could have lost that game, if Zimbabwe was in that position with 4 runs from 3 balls i wonder who would have won?

  • rishi on March 6, 2010, 22:16 GMT

    we have all heard about the circle of life, and cricket is just like that. there will be times when one team is dowm and another is a champion side. australia is in the position that west indies was in 15 years ago, the main difference is that australia has nurtured its cricket, whereas the west indies has failed to do so. Our board has let too many things slip, in the misguided belief that things will take care of themselves. they have failed to heed the wake up calls for some time now and this has resulted in the progressive decline of west indian cricket. on the upside there have been some promising new players, who can form the nucleus of a competitive team in the future. however the WICB needs to implement measures to ensure that our talent, and possibly our life as a cricketing nation, is not squandered. WAKE UP, FACE FACTS, fix the administrative flaws and we may once again be a force to be reckoned with

  • djlollipop on March 6, 2010, 21:06 GMT

    although all this is bloody depressing i still believe there is hope we have youngsters like darren bravo kemar roach adrian bharath andre creary plus samuels will soon be back it would be great if he could play a few games b4 south africa gets here or even b4 the world t2o taylor sarwan & bravo should be coming back 2

  • Shadab Raza on March 6, 2010, 19:24 GMT

    Very nice article. worth reading for west indian cricket lover. i m a pakistani but like 70s 80s west indians a lot. a bunch of fighters and attitude to win the match. west indies need serious cricketers who like to play cricket 365 days & very aggressive guys. they need some "west indian" attitude.

  • Aditya on March 6, 2010, 17:30 GMT

    I`m really pained by the state of West Indian cricket at the moment. I simply refuse to believe that there is`nt enough talent to work with among the ranks. Gayle,Sarwan,Bravo,Chanderpaul,Barath,Lendyl Simmons, Deonaraine, Ramdin, Pollard, Dwayne Smith Benn, Taylor, Fidel Edwards, Roach, Tonge, RAmpaul with Sammy , Miller and Bernard is`nt actually something which you cannot build on. There is more to it than meets the eye. I don`t think Gayl`s attitude as a captain helps either. Bravo , if fully fit should be made the captain. They surely are better than a side which has lost 2 consecutive games to the Zims.

  • Imran on March 6, 2010, 17:23 GMT

    Couldn't have said it any better. Enough is enough. No more excuses. Even Michael Holdings goes on about the problems in West Indian cricket. Everyone has reasons and excuses for the decline but no one is worried about the solutions. No one is being pro-active. Its a shame. Invincible West Indians lack even competitiveness.

  • Benjamin A on March 6, 2010, 17:22 GMT

    It's a sad day in cricket when the West Indies are beaten by Zimbabwe. Gayle should have been sacked a long time ago, but then again I cant think of an adequate replacement either. What West Indies lack in my opinion is not a lack of talent it's a lack of real leadership and poor management. I say sack the whole lot of those geezers, put Clive Lloyd in charge of the board and give him free reign to do as he wishes with the team then perhaps we'll see some improvement. But so long as it's run by some bickering old wastes, West Indies will be susceptible to teams like Canada or Afghanistan.

  • Nagendra Shenoy on March 6, 2010, 13:26 GMT

    Cricket has become a job for these WI Players, no passion, no application, they are a bunch of average employees representing a company called WICB, fighting for salaries, sick leaves, medical benefits etc. WI cricket has today reached a stage where they should be made to Compete with Minnows to qualify for WC

  • Randy on March 6, 2010, 11:43 GMT

    It is high time that the older heads get out of managing cricket. They were Great players but managers/selectors and god help us coaches. Our hay days were marked with talent not honed skilled. Our talent pool is low and coaching, selection and de-selecting is important. Can i have the job????

  • Nishad on March 6, 2010, 11:30 GMT

    I think it all mismanagement. Cricket has changed a lot compared to the 80's. What was India then and where is India now. If cricket in India has developed the credit should go to the BCCI. Its BCCI that nurtured Indian cricket set up a foundation in the grass root levels and developed itself so strong to dictate terms with BCCI. Nobody would've even imagined such a situation in the 80's. Whereas West Indies who had such a platform, world champions twice in a row but unfortunately their cricketing board failed to capitalize on it. They did nothing to improve the standards of cricket and now blame other sports like football and basketball. Cricket is played with lots of passion in India and in West Indies. Still you can find that passion for cricket with the West Indies. If only their board could sit and think where they have gone wrong and apply changes from the grass root levels to the demanding cricket of modern era, would West Indies be back to the glory of 80's.

  • David Singh on March 6, 2010, 10:45 GMT

    It really hurts to see the WI play like this. Their body language at times says it all. They ask us to continue to "RALLY"! We are getting tried of cam'PAIN'ing without results guys!

  • Venkat on March 6, 2010, 10:37 GMT

    I am unsure if blaming the current playing XI and comparing them to the teams of the 50s to the 80s is relevant - these are the guys who have not been distracted by the biggest culprit for this decline - American cable TV and their influence on neighboring countries. Youngsters in the English-speaking islands of the Carribean are influenced by basketball (notables Ewing, Duncan) and others to baseball. For the Windies to become the collective cricket superpower again, it merits reading Tom Friedman's The World is Flat and its implications. Internet and cable harnessed India's collective craziness for cricket whereas in the Carribean, it showed the riches other sports offer. All you need is 3-4 batsmen "marketable" on TV across the Carribean (and not just in their respective countries)and the revenues will flow in. Given the Carribean physique, fast bowlers can easily be groomed and can easily knock the socks off Indian so-called "fast" bowlers who average 30+ per wicket!

  • Gautam on March 6, 2010, 9:39 GMT

    The conversation between Gayle and Bishop is very well jotted and quite humorous!! Hope WI cricket also doesn't become a JOKE and soon they reform and save the face of their previous generation veterans!!

  • Gautam on March 6, 2010, 9:20 GMT

    I guess Lara, Viv, Ambrose and Walsh can do better than the current WI squad. Not sure where cricket is heading in Caribbean. Hoping that the old war-horses of WI cricket can indulge in the selection panel and start mentoring the team to save the pride of WI cricket!!

  • Desmond Mohamed on March 6, 2010, 8:44 GMT

    I have run out of discriptions that describes the present state of WI cricket. The team of the 1980S had one thing that all Australian teams have; MENTAL THOUGHNESS. Lara had it so has chanderpaul but no one else in the present team nor of the past 112 years or so. Gayle shows it on occasions but he hasn't got the strong presence of mind that is needed to harness a winning team.When a few players are injured, we have not got the high level of players in reserves as the Australians have. the cupboard is bare. They say you only find out how good a system is only when something goes wrong. West-Indian style management in the main is poor and at best only average ( Clive Lloyd been th eexception). Sadly they are not eloquent speakers in the main and a lot of them lack the discipline needed to stay at the top. They rest of the cricketing nations have moved on and have improved but WI has stayed where they were management wise in the 1960s. How sad it is for me to write this but it is true

  • Jamshed on March 6, 2010, 8:05 GMT

    Give me the Windies of old,but minus the swagger.

  • Donald on March 6, 2010, 7:53 GMT

    It certainly is disappointing for WI. However, it does put help put Australia's 5-0 triumph over them in perspective, along with the ongoing series in New Zealand. It suggests that Australia are nothing more than a decent international side. Good from far, far from good.

  • N.C.Vijay on March 6, 2010, 7:35 GMT

    Hi Chris, After a long time I had been hearing your name. I feel sorry for your team's bad position. Hope the westindian team would be back to the top position as it was before during Clive Loyd's regime. I wish u good luck for that and my support is always for your team. bye

  • ravi on March 6, 2010, 7:28 GMT

    very well put Andrew

  • mohsin on March 6, 2010, 7:26 GMT

    O thou art WI!

  • chandrashekhar on March 6, 2010, 7:20 GMT

    The west indies team of early 80's during clive lyod's time never used to talk much but their game used to speak for themselves. Now it is only talks and talks and talks and no perfomance. And all are tired of this, come on guys just show the world that you are a tough bunch of cricketers and we all want the west indies to be the #1 cricket team in the world.

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  • chandrashekhar on March 6, 2010, 7:20 GMT

    The west indies team of early 80's during clive lyod's time never used to talk much but their game used to speak for themselves. Now it is only talks and talks and talks and no perfomance. And all are tired of this, come on guys just show the world that you are a tough bunch of cricketers and we all want the west indies to be the #1 cricket team in the world.

  • mohsin on March 6, 2010, 7:26 GMT

    O thou art WI!

  • ravi on March 6, 2010, 7:28 GMT

    very well put Andrew

  • N.C.Vijay on March 6, 2010, 7:35 GMT

    Hi Chris, After a long time I had been hearing your name. I feel sorry for your team's bad position. Hope the westindian team would be back to the top position as it was before during Clive Loyd's regime. I wish u good luck for that and my support is always for your team. bye

  • Donald on March 6, 2010, 7:53 GMT

    It certainly is disappointing for WI. However, it does put help put Australia's 5-0 triumph over them in perspective, along with the ongoing series in New Zealand. It suggests that Australia are nothing more than a decent international side. Good from far, far from good.

  • Jamshed on March 6, 2010, 8:05 GMT

    Give me the Windies of old,but minus the swagger.

  • Desmond Mohamed on March 6, 2010, 8:44 GMT

    I have run out of discriptions that describes the present state of WI cricket. The team of the 1980S had one thing that all Australian teams have; MENTAL THOUGHNESS. Lara had it so has chanderpaul but no one else in the present team nor of the past 112 years or so. Gayle shows it on occasions but he hasn't got the strong presence of mind that is needed to harness a winning team.When a few players are injured, we have not got the high level of players in reserves as the Australians have. the cupboard is bare. They say you only find out how good a system is only when something goes wrong. West-Indian style management in the main is poor and at best only average ( Clive Lloyd been th eexception). Sadly they are not eloquent speakers in the main and a lot of them lack the discipline needed to stay at the top. They rest of the cricketing nations have moved on and have improved but WI has stayed where they were management wise in the 1960s. How sad it is for me to write this but it is true

  • Gautam on March 6, 2010, 9:20 GMT

    I guess Lara, Viv, Ambrose and Walsh can do better than the current WI squad. Not sure where cricket is heading in Caribbean. Hoping that the old war-horses of WI cricket can indulge in the selection panel and start mentoring the team to save the pride of WI cricket!!

  • Gautam on March 6, 2010, 9:39 GMT

    The conversation between Gayle and Bishop is very well jotted and quite humorous!! Hope WI cricket also doesn't become a JOKE and soon they reform and save the face of their previous generation veterans!!

  • Venkat on March 6, 2010, 10:37 GMT

    I am unsure if blaming the current playing XI and comparing them to the teams of the 50s to the 80s is relevant - these are the guys who have not been distracted by the biggest culprit for this decline - American cable TV and their influence on neighboring countries. Youngsters in the English-speaking islands of the Carribean are influenced by basketball (notables Ewing, Duncan) and others to baseball. For the Windies to become the collective cricket superpower again, it merits reading Tom Friedman's The World is Flat and its implications. Internet and cable harnessed India's collective craziness for cricket whereas in the Carribean, it showed the riches other sports offer. All you need is 3-4 batsmen "marketable" on TV across the Carribean (and not just in their respective countries)and the revenues will flow in. Given the Carribean physique, fast bowlers can easily be groomed and can easily knock the socks off Indian so-called "fast" bowlers who average 30+ per wicket!