West Indies Cricket June 26, 2011

I am a West Indian

Cricinfo
From Ryon S
45

From Ryon S. Cupidore, West Indies

I am a West Indian.

I have grown up with stories of some of the best men to ever play the game of cricket, embellishments doing no justice to the real thing. I have heard and read of the famous victories and series of years gone by. I have spent many an hour online reliving some of those moments through streaming video.

I have watched Courtney Walsh and Curtly Ambrose make the best batsmen in the world look like schoolboys. I have seen Brian Lara make fielding captains chew their nails down to nothing. I have seen Shivnarine Chanderpaul frustrate bowlers into the ground.

I have also been through contract disputes. I have suffered through several humiliating losses to lower-ranked teams. I have been witness to some of the most spectacular batting collapses in cricketing history from undefeatable positions.

But I am still, a West Indian.

And I am not one to live in the past. Yet its legacy, especially that of recent times, forces me to jump for joy at any victory, even if it is one with the series long decided. One match matters little to the opposition, but it means the world to be. Such is the life of one who wishes for the glory days once again. I am drowning and snatching at straws, some might say.

But what reason is there for any other reaction? There has never been a time in recent memory when the players and the board agree on anything. It goes back to the old Cable and Wireless days and the relationship has hardly been satisfactory. The current state is as such, with Chris Gayle’s future seemingly heading towards freelance T20 work. I fear that he might not be the last such player from the region with such an outlook. Jerome Taylor may yet go in that direction. Yet the team, my team, seems to be playing good cricket, at least more consistently than years gone by.

The Indian ODI series may be over, but there were flashes and patches of brilliance, as always. Players caught the imagination and good performances were there to behold. Andre Russell’s blistering 92, Darren Bravo’s shift from first into fourth gear, Anthony Martin’s accurate bowling and livewire fielding. There may be a lot of complaints about Darren Sammy as captain, but the fact is that the team has played good basic cricket with him at the head and there has been some success recently.

I must be crazy to say that. Two lost ODI series and a less-than-spectacular exit from the World Cup is hardly what anyone would call success. They make the interspersed victories almost null and void. Still, if the straw is there, I will hang onto it. Because for the first time in what seems like forever, there are a lot of positives in the way this team goes about things.

The team is, apart from a few players, very inexperienced. But the potential is present. Very few will deny that Devendra Bishoo is one of the most promising players to have made his debut this season. Or that Ravi Rampaul and Lendl Simmons’ re-entry into the international game finds them in better form both physically and mentally. Even Marlon Samuels and Carlton Baugh seem to be getting better with time spent in the middle. And for the first time in ages, there actually seems to be competition for a spot in the team. This is a necessary thing for any team aspiring to be at the top of the rankings. Only those with the best form, and the best potential, should be selected.

But that potential must also be realised in order to build a strong team. It is not built on constant bickering between the WIPA and the WICB. They are two halves of the same whole, and until they realise this, West Indies cricket suffers. And so do the fans. Cricket has always been huge in the region, but the fighting, the contract disputes, the second-string teams, the persistence with out-of-form players...it must end. Then, perhaps, I will consider paying a sky-high price to watch the team, my team, at the Queen’s Park Oval. And perhaps I will not be alone in my consideration.

I am a West Indian. And I am not alone.

I grew up on stories of legends. I observed, in my lifetime, the downfall. I look to the future now. For the time being at least, the future of West Indies cricket is shining brightly. But for that future to come to pass, someone, anyone must first fix the present.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Warren Mendes on July 18, 2011, 22:26 GMT

    So, what is the "West Indies", anyway? I am a graduate of the University of the West Indies, which is to my knowledge the only other shared institution in the region other than the cricket team. The WI Federation is ancient history and long forgotten. 99 percent of Jamaicans have never traveled to any of the other islands, and would not be able to even understand a Bajan or Trini dialect sufficiently to hold a conversation with one of them. The Scottish and Welsh don't want to play soccer on a "British" team, so what is the incentive of "West Indians" to play for the region? We need to rebuild the regional sense of common culture, and cricket is at the heart of that. Airing the movie "Fire in Babylon" in schools is a good start. Inter island school cricket programs, tournaments, joint training programs, cricket exchange programs, might incentivise the youth and stir their imaginations to want to become cricketers. Every Brasilian kid still wants to be Pele or Kaka or Ronaldo!

  • Ravi on July 18, 2011, 12:28 GMT

    Followed West Indies cricket since the mid 1950's - (man they were just brilliant - Sobers the greatest cricketer that has ever lived no one can touch him) till the Richards era in the 80's. They thrashed most sides notably India - I am not ashamed to say that though being an Indian myself. They were a joy to watch, played the game with such flair - smiling face - feel deprived that the youth of West Indies(natural sportsmen they are) have taken to more lucrative sports namely, basketball, athletics, football & perhaps other american sports as Baseball & Soccer.

  • george on July 14, 2011, 16:10 GMT

    y every body jumping on SAMMY back lets go back to lara he is the one that put WI cricket in this state money is the game

  • K. Hall on July 6, 2011, 22:26 GMT

    What an inspiring article, gives us something to look forward to, at least we're not all fickle-minded West Indians. Blackie's comment on dhall's team was perfectly in order, I'm also Barbadian, we cannot win a regional game, yet he wants a WI team full of Barbadian losers, this must stop regardless of what island they're from.

  • Aman Shorey on July 6, 2011, 0:53 GMT

    Just to mention i like Sammy,he would be the 15th player in my one day team,but to get to the eleven he has to show more consistency with batting as he has showed in glimpses specially against South Africa(remember),He does not fit in the test team somehow.Its high time WI gets a wk who could bat,I would prepare Simmons to fit that role,he did not look that bad behind the stumps against INDIA,remember what Dravid(the great) did for INDIA before Dhoni came,I have gone for Samuels for the captain as he has enough expierience now and is hitting form,i read an article where he mentioned about his life for 2 years while he was banned going through a lot of stuff and how that has changed his outlook towards and how he has matured as an individual,i think if not Sammy he could take WI cricket forward.I just pray to god that just for 6 months WI could field their best eleven and get them rid of all the politics.

  • Aman Shorey on July 6, 2011, 0:33 GMT

    Every body who loves cricket would love the Westindies, even being a proud INDIAN i some times wish Westindies beat INDIA,you all would agree that Westindies have not fielded their best eleven i dont know for how many years now,be it because of injuries,ipl,contract disputes,board-player conflict,regional favoritism, the list could go on.I just wish to see a full strength WI team to play consistently for 6 months and then analyse their progress,i am sure they would suprise many.The good part now about the WI is healthy competition,so i would not like to give an eleven but a fifteen who should be rotated around as per the conditions and form.At the same time it would be important to stick to them for that period, Tests- Gayle,Barath,Darren Bravo,Sarwan,Chanderpaul,Samuels(c),Simmons(wk),Taylor,Rampaul,Edwards,Bishoo--- Roach,Benn,Braithwaite,Baugh, Onedayers- Gayle,Simmons(wk),Darren Bravo,Sarwan,Samuels(C),Pollard,Dwayne Bravo,Russell,Taylor,Bishoo,Edwards---- Rampual,Martin,Barath

  • Ashok Sridharan on June 30, 2011, 12:10 GMT

    Wonderful article and I guess this is the first time someone has acknowledged the fact that West Indies have been steadily impoving over the last couple of years. The results may not be much better, but unlike their predecessors over the last decade or so, this team has not just shown the stomach for a scrap, but has got itself into match winning positions several times in the recent past.

    What's holding back this team is not lack of ability or spirit, but lack of self-belief. In many ways they remind me of 90s England- a side not lacking in inspiration, but short on belief. Its just a matter of time before they find the belief to compete. My best wishes to West Indies cricket and its fans.

  • Amrish on June 29, 2011, 13:41 GMT

    I am great fan of WI cricket, I miss Ambrose and Patterson bowling while Viv Richards and Lara's batting.

    times and times again, I watch my DVD collection and it is so much fun to watch Ambrose ball or Richards Bat.

    Bring back the Glory, sack this current Board officials, they doing the same thing to Gayle, what they did to Lara.

  • jason on June 29, 2011, 11:49 GMT

    i really love wi cricket.want to see make it a comeback an d for that my idea is simple and straight.the ICC should take the control of cricket in the west indies and immediately disolved the WICB.in a year or two make ground level changes and a new cricket board for the west indies comprising past players.i really want to see WI on top once again......

  • Rupert Greaves on June 29, 2011, 5:13 GMT

    The selectors rightfully dropped Nash because of poor form. I was hoping for an opening bowling pair of Edwards and Roach followed by Rampaul, Bishoo and then Sammy. Sammy is not a first change bowler and should only be used to give the others rest if needed.The fastest bowlers in the world would've put the Indians on the back foot from ball 1. I know Roach is out of form after being on his own for so long but I believe that Edwards would've pulled him along. You may say that the batting would've been weakened by leaving out Samuels but I say that if the batsmen are not producing it would be best to play the bowlers who would stop the opposition from piling up big scores and in any case it is the bowlers who are making the runs. From our last visit to Australia, I was always hoping and praying that Edwards and Taylor would quickly regain fitness so that we would again have a 4 prong pace attack.Rampaul is not all that slow, ask Raina.

  • Warren Mendes on July 18, 2011, 22:26 GMT

    So, what is the "West Indies", anyway? I am a graduate of the University of the West Indies, which is to my knowledge the only other shared institution in the region other than the cricket team. The WI Federation is ancient history and long forgotten. 99 percent of Jamaicans have never traveled to any of the other islands, and would not be able to even understand a Bajan or Trini dialect sufficiently to hold a conversation with one of them. The Scottish and Welsh don't want to play soccer on a "British" team, so what is the incentive of "West Indians" to play for the region? We need to rebuild the regional sense of common culture, and cricket is at the heart of that. Airing the movie "Fire in Babylon" in schools is a good start. Inter island school cricket programs, tournaments, joint training programs, cricket exchange programs, might incentivise the youth and stir their imaginations to want to become cricketers. Every Brasilian kid still wants to be Pele or Kaka or Ronaldo!

  • Ravi on July 18, 2011, 12:28 GMT

    Followed West Indies cricket since the mid 1950's - (man they were just brilliant - Sobers the greatest cricketer that has ever lived no one can touch him) till the Richards era in the 80's. They thrashed most sides notably India - I am not ashamed to say that though being an Indian myself. They were a joy to watch, played the game with such flair - smiling face - feel deprived that the youth of West Indies(natural sportsmen they are) have taken to more lucrative sports namely, basketball, athletics, football & perhaps other american sports as Baseball & Soccer.

  • george on July 14, 2011, 16:10 GMT

    y every body jumping on SAMMY back lets go back to lara he is the one that put WI cricket in this state money is the game

  • K. Hall on July 6, 2011, 22:26 GMT

    What an inspiring article, gives us something to look forward to, at least we're not all fickle-minded West Indians. Blackie's comment on dhall's team was perfectly in order, I'm also Barbadian, we cannot win a regional game, yet he wants a WI team full of Barbadian losers, this must stop regardless of what island they're from.

  • Aman Shorey on July 6, 2011, 0:53 GMT

    Just to mention i like Sammy,he would be the 15th player in my one day team,but to get to the eleven he has to show more consistency with batting as he has showed in glimpses specially against South Africa(remember),He does not fit in the test team somehow.Its high time WI gets a wk who could bat,I would prepare Simmons to fit that role,he did not look that bad behind the stumps against INDIA,remember what Dravid(the great) did for INDIA before Dhoni came,I have gone for Samuels for the captain as he has enough expierience now and is hitting form,i read an article where he mentioned about his life for 2 years while he was banned going through a lot of stuff and how that has changed his outlook towards and how he has matured as an individual,i think if not Sammy he could take WI cricket forward.I just pray to god that just for 6 months WI could field their best eleven and get them rid of all the politics.

  • Aman Shorey on July 6, 2011, 0:33 GMT

    Every body who loves cricket would love the Westindies, even being a proud INDIAN i some times wish Westindies beat INDIA,you all would agree that Westindies have not fielded their best eleven i dont know for how many years now,be it because of injuries,ipl,contract disputes,board-player conflict,regional favoritism, the list could go on.I just wish to see a full strength WI team to play consistently for 6 months and then analyse their progress,i am sure they would suprise many.The good part now about the WI is healthy competition,so i would not like to give an eleven but a fifteen who should be rotated around as per the conditions and form.At the same time it would be important to stick to them for that period, Tests- Gayle,Barath,Darren Bravo,Sarwan,Chanderpaul,Samuels(c),Simmons(wk),Taylor,Rampaul,Edwards,Bishoo--- Roach,Benn,Braithwaite,Baugh, Onedayers- Gayle,Simmons(wk),Darren Bravo,Sarwan,Samuels(C),Pollard,Dwayne Bravo,Russell,Taylor,Bishoo,Edwards---- Rampual,Martin,Barath

  • Ashok Sridharan on June 30, 2011, 12:10 GMT

    Wonderful article and I guess this is the first time someone has acknowledged the fact that West Indies have been steadily impoving over the last couple of years. The results may not be much better, but unlike their predecessors over the last decade or so, this team has not just shown the stomach for a scrap, but has got itself into match winning positions several times in the recent past.

    What's holding back this team is not lack of ability or spirit, but lack of self-belief. In many ways they remind me of 90s England- a side not lacking in inspiration, but short on belief. Its just a matter of time before they find the belief to compete. My best wishes to West Indies cricket and its fans.

  • Amrish on June 29, 2011, 13:41 GMT

    I am great fan of WI cricket, I miss Ambrose and Patterson bowling while Viv Richards and Lara's batting.

    times and times again, I watch my DVD collection and it is so much fun to watch Ambrose ball or Richards Bat.

    Bring back the Glory, sack this current Board officials, they doing the same thing to Gayle, what they did to Lara.

  • jason on June 29, 2011, 11:49 GMT

    i really love wi cricket.want to see make it a comeback an d for that my idea is simple and straight.the ICC should take the control of cricket in the west indies and immediately disolved the WICB.in a year or two make ground level changes and a new cricket board for the west indies comprising past players.i really want to see WI on top once again......

  • Rupert Greaves on June 29, 2011, 5:13 GMT

    The selectors rightfully dropped Nash because of poor form. I was hoping for an opening bowling pair of Edwards and Roach followed by Rampaul, Bishoo and then Sammy. Sammy is not a first change bowler and should only be used to give the others rest if needed.The fastest bowlers in the world would've put the Indians on the back foot from ball 1. I know Roach is out of form after being on his own for so long but I believe that Edwards would've pulled him along. You may say that the batting would've been weakened by leaving out Samuels but I say that if the batsmen are not producing it would be best to play the bowlers who would stop the opposition from piling up big scores and in any case it is the bowlers who are making the runs. From our last visit to Australia, I was always hoping and praying that Edwards and Taylor would quickly regain fitness so that we would again have a 4 prong pace attack.Rampaul is not all that slow, ask Raina.

  • mohammed travadi on June 29, 2011, 4:52 GMT

    i m an indian born i love cricket thats the only one hoby i have from child hood the time i understand cricket from that time i love westindies team mainly because of a one & only one BRIAN LARA untill he was played i like 2 watch windies cricket but now not that much because now there is no fighting cricketer on team it does not mean that windies does not have good player they still have like gayle sarwan chanderpaul but the wicb i dont understand they are plan any way a wish windies team can reach again same days which they had 1970 to 1985. i wish windies team can found another great player like brian lara. wicb should have 2 take in brian lara in board committee they destroyed a world class player the time he was playing but now at least they can use his talent by keeping him in wicb.

  • Meety on June 29, 2011, 2:19 GMT

    A full strength WIndies line up SHOULD be quite competitive. Gayle, Barath, Simmons, D Bravo, Chanderpaul, Samuels/Sarwan/Nash/D Bravo, Ramdin/Baugh, Sammy/Taylor, Edwards/Roach, Rampaul, Bishoo/Benn. Thats 18 good players vying for 11 spots. I think Bishoo is going to be a superstar, I'm dissappointed Roach's form has waned, but Edwards has stepped up. A Roach/Edwards new ball attack would be pretty fearsome. The biggest problem the WIndies seem to have is their batting & to a lessor extent fielding. I think the WIndies need to have a look at what Zimbabwe did in the late 1990s early 21st century. They were short on talent - but they made up for it their fielding. Great fielding makes the bowlers look even better. Back great fielding, good bowling with good batting & the WIndies will win more then they lose most of the time! ps: Sort the Player Union V Board dispute out!!!!

  • mrpalyer on June 29, 2011, 0:28 GMT

    The chairman of selectors, Butts said after the appointment of Sammy as captain, that they had considered Sarwan for captaincy but since he did not have a contract they were not sure about the consequences, Gayle & Bravo had had refused their contract, Yet Bravo was appionted Vice Captain afterwards. What happened to Gayle, and it osbviously seems that Sarwan had resigned from the vice captaincy earlier because of some problem with somebody. Gayle, Lara and Richards have all been on record as having reccommended Sarwan for captaincy. We need a truthful as well as a systematic way of handling West Indies cricket or as the world sees we are going down hill and we will reach the the end very fast.

  • Sid on June 28, 2011, 18:46 GMT

    I am an Indian, and one of the lucky few on this board to have seen the greats from the 70s and 80s - Lloyd, Viv, Holding, Roberts, Marshall, Garner, Haynes, Greenidge - as well as the more modern masters - Ambrose, Walsh, Bishop and Lara. They played scintillating cricket on the field, and were gentlemen off it. I have seen the slide of the West Indies team, and the rise and fall of Australia. I don't think there is any cricket lover in the world, West Indian or otherwise, who doesn't feel a sense of loss at the decline of the West Indies. Ask anyone for their opinion on Australia's decline, and they'll probably happily say "They had it coming". A lovely article written by someone who truly cares about West Indian cricket. I hope for the sake of cricket lovers like you that the WICB and WIPA can put their differences aside and do what's necessary for the good of the game. With fans like you around, there is hope for the West Indies yet.

  • Anil Sachdeva on June 28, 2011, 17:50 GMT

    Being an Indian, I am a very big Fan of WI Cricket team. Still rememer the days with Walsh, Ambrose, Sir Richards, Richardson, Marshall, so many to named. Those were the golden days. Players are always innocent. No matter what is going inside, but they were not in any disputes with other teams like most of the teams do now a days. We all Indians love to see WI playing. We hope that the golden days will be back soon with some of the Lightening speed pacers and some Blaster Batsment. I really wish for the best for West Indies, my favorite Cricket Team.

  • Ryon S. Cupidore on June 28, 2011, 16:39 GMT

    Really wonderful to see the discussions sparking from my article.

    Many people are complaining about the team selection. While it is unusual at best, there will never be a West Indies team that absolutely makes everyone happy. That fact must be admitted first and foremost.

    But I think that what everyone can agree on is that something needs to happen with the WICB. If the higher-ups don't think that we fans are passionate anymore and don't want to see our team winning...then they are dead wrong. Of course, nobody would take on the opinion of one person, or two, or ten. But they will listen to millions. Look at how many foreigners have supported me in the article. The WORLD wants to see us be more competitive. The WORLD wants to see something change with the administration.

    We are NOT alone.

  • Raaj on June 28, 2011, 14:02 GMT

    I want to dance to the Tune .. we are the Windies and we will nlow you away"//yes im a Indian , but then i have always been inspired bu the Might windies of the 70's and 80's .. i will for one sure believe windies will be back on track .. i pary that keamr roach , Jerome Taylor , Fiedel Edwards an Tino best together make the batsman sway to their tunes .. come on selectors show some common sense ... let the glory be held by the windies again"

  • Venkat on June 28, 2011, 11:54 GMT

    West Indians play simple cricket, they don't play mind game and all the sledging and mudslinging will not be there, they know if they are on the field they need to get the opposite teams batsman out and if they are batting they know only to surpass the opposite teams score, not more than that, that is the way they play. I like their style.

  • Umair Iqbal on June 28, 2011, 7:56 GMT

    West Indies is having alot of talent but i am surprise why Board of West Indies is hesitated to use the best fire power. Also the issues between board and players are causing problems for West Indies Cricket. In the end! who will suffer? The Cricket Lovers especially West Indian......

    Please resolve issues to have a better cricket envirnment in Caribian.

  • George on June 28, 2011, 1:18 GMT

    @Chan, Brian Lara is the best batsman the West Indies have ever seen, in case you doubt that, he has the records to prove it and no ! I am not a Trini, I am Guyanese.

  • dwane on June 27, 2011, 23:16 GMT

    we need to bring back gayle give him the captaincy along with ramdin bravo can u imagine a west indies with taylor roach and edwards in the line up a bowling attack that will make batsmen think with rampaul and jason holder russell waiting tin the wings well done bishoo hope u dont get a ramnarine well done windies westindian till i die we will triumph once again starting tomorrow

  • inot on June 27, 2011, 20:36 GMT

    As an ardent WI since the 50's the performance of a few players in a few matches on home turf against teams weakened by the absence of their star players means nothing to me.The records show that all of our outstanding cricketers honed their skills by playing professional cricket in the English or Australian leagues.That is no longer the case and the WICB has been unable to come up with a program that turns young talented cricketers into professionals. As it struggles to do so it is obstructed by the adversarial approach of Ramnarine. Why are we still competitive with other countries at the under 19 level and at number 8 in test cricket when the WIPA and WICB are involved? Kanhai, Sobers, Lloyd etc didn't need the WICB and WIPA to become professionals;the current crop does but there is no plan to get them there.Sammy does not have the talent or the leadership skills to take these young players to the next level.He does nor inspire confidence or respect from them...unfortunately

  • nuffstyle on June 27, 2011, 19:28 GMT

    All the posts I have read seems to have one common thread, everyone wants to see WI cricket back to the glory days. Unfortunately,this will not happen until the root of the problem is fixed. Blackie posted that "Insularity has been one of the biggest problems in WI cricket" I too believe that this is the root of our problem starting at the top, the WICB. The senior members of this board are from St Lucia so they have installed a captain that really cannot justify his place in the team. Having said that, I must admit he seems to make the team gell as a unit; but playing Roach or Rusell in his spot seems to make more sense. I still think the region is producing talented players,(memory serves, we won the under 19) but our boys are continuously disheartened by the nonesense that is happening at the board level. If they can get that situation corrected, the players will come around and the people will Rally Around the West Indies playing once again to packed houses of calypso cricket fans.

  • Kent Jones on June 27, 2011, 19:12 GMT

    We must put our faith in our fast bowlers. They are the ones to bring back the glory to WI cricket. We presently have fast bowlers who could literally walk into any international side: Edwards, Roach, Taylor, Lawson (not sure what is going on with him). We must play these guys on a regular basis. thats the plain facts. Also Russell is another very good bowler, who can bat as well. Lets go with them all the way. Lets give the bowlers a chance to reclaim what the WI has lost.

  • Dhall on June 27, 2011, 19:01 GMT

    A reply to Blackie: Sorry, I did not know I picked a Bajan team--some players I suggested played for the Combined Campus, the West Indies A and Under 19 team--I did not consider who(or where they were from) --I was just looking for the best team for the West Indies and wanted to give some promosing youngster a chance so we do not depend on Sarwan or Gayle, two of the most undependable players in WI cricket( yes the WICB is a disaster to WI cricket to add to our troubles).Simmons and Rampaul took several years to mature---Darren Bravo will need several years to mature ---so get some more younster in the act of playing and have a pool of good players to come as India is doing. I still think that Samuels has not reached a maturity level to be in WI Test cricket---and Gayle does not even understand the great importance of being a WI captain-- With Simmons, Barath, Rampaul, Sammy and Shiv you can see and fell the pride and passion that comes out when playing for WI.

  • syd on June 27, 2011, 13:43 GMT

    I will agree there are a few bright spots in the bleakness of west indian cricket... Our major problen is not the players themselves, its the Board that is trying to run a game they kno noting of. Darren Sammy is doing the best he can, i personally think he is a better captain, if he can get the support of the board and his players , there is no rerason y we cant compete with the better teams in the T20 and ODI's, test cricket is still anthe kettle of fish. No matter wat they say I AM NOW AND FOREVER WILL BE A WEST INDIAN....Rally round the weest Indies

  • tony on June 27, 2011, 13:30 GMT

    the problem with west indies cricket is 'territorialism'. our selectors want to play they guys from their neck of the woods rather than playing the best.case and point: jamaica is the defending champion in west indies cricket, yet only one jamaican is a permanent fixture on the team. explain why chris gayle(the most feared batsman in the world)marlon samuel, the leading score this year, andre russel (argubly the best allrounder in the region)and tamar lambert who is a classic captain and competent allrounder are not in the team. we need leadership and confidence and these guys bring both qualities to the team. MY TEAM (ADRIAN BARATH, LENDL SIMMONS, CHRIS GAYLE, MARLON SAMUELS,RAMNAREESH SARWAN, CHANDERPAUL, TAMAR LAMBERT(CAPTAIN),ANDRE RUSSEL, RAVI RAMPAUL,FIDEL EDWARDS AND DAVINDRA BISHOO...we have to go back to fast bowling thats where our strentgh lies. my team has depth in batting and competence in bowling. my team is able to post over 400 runs per innings in any format of the game

  • Richard on June 27, 2011, 9:00 GMT

    Lovely article it will bode well if the higher ups were to read some of what we as fan would love to happen. I'm quite glad that the fans still have hope as I do even though for all the years of in-fighting has not helped. But it is the faith I keep and hold dear as I'm always been a cricket fan first and then other sports. And like you I'm a West Indian and yes we are not alone...

  • Murali on June 27, 2011, 8:40 GMT

    I am an Indian but was a great West Indian fan. I still remember the first world cup clive llyod's century and the second world cup where richard's hit the last ball sixer. Apart from the world cup that great team won series against England in England where Greenidge and Hayens tore english bowlers apart. After Viv Richards, there is nobody to mention worth the salt. Walsh, Ambrose and Richardson were the few apart from genius Lara. The main problem is West Indian board. The present board should be sacked enmass and people from other country should form part of the WI board and develop a team. Whenever I see matches in West Indies now, I really feel sad for people like Llyod, Richards, Greenidge, Hayens, Rowe, Holding, etc who gave their life to cricket and entertain the entire world. Whenever they played I always support West Indies. The present board has done a massive damage to West Indian cricket. That is why you see hardly any people in the stadium.

  • lankansikh on June 27, 2011, 5:29 GMT

    I agree with you my bro!!! I live in the subcontinent. Yet, essentially we are West Indians. we take enormous proud in the performance of the regional team because that is what we are made of. We need to preserve criket and its dignity in carribean. you may be a Jamaican, trini, Guyanese, Bhajan, leeward, Antigua...... Yet you are one of us. We play together in brotherhood. It is the most exciting team. It is the rainbow team. Who can be proud of the composition other than carribeans. Afro-carribeans, East Indian Carribeans, White, chinese carrbeans, chinese, lebanese carribeans. We are one family bound by cricket lovely criket. We pray for jesus, allah, Hindu gods because WI is a multi religious team.I am a west Indian and true boy, you are not alone...

  • blackie on June 27, 2011, 2:31 GMT

    Quick question to Dhall. Why not play the entire 'can't- win-a-game' barbados team. I'm bajan by the way and insularity is one of our Windies cricket problems. Just play the best players where ever they're from man.

  • Trevor on June 26, 2011, 21:29 GMT

    Comments such as the ones above really gives a positive outlook of the state of West-Indies cricket and thanks to them also for passionately speaking from the heart and indirectly appealing to the our West-Indies communities to return to playing cricket the only style we knew and ruthlessly applied. External forces were systematically put into place to reduce the strength, integrity and Quality of West-Indies cricket, they just could not allow the continuous winning of championships by cricketers from such a small/undeveloped region.Gradually and intentionally, scientific cricket; overseas cricket Academy and monies were contractually offered to our players. We were powerful at one time because of Caribbean cricket basics: Beach cricket,Road cricket,No helmet & No money, Just National Pride. The problem is not the WICB or Cpt.Sammy. Discipline/Management must prevail. The WIPA produces too much negative energy. Lets get back to our 'Fireworks' style and fearlessness. AS WE KNOW IT.

  • Dhall on June 26, 2011, 19:01 GMT

    I would experiment with the batting through out this tour as much as I can. The bowling is fine except I would replace Sammy with Andre Russel( by the way what happened to Gavin Tonge, B. Bess--where are they--They need to be around)Only Adrian Barath and Shiv Chandrapul bat in the current position. Lendel Simmons should bat at three. R. Sarwan should be dropped.Opening batsman to partner Barath should be Braithwaite. Nash should be dropped. I would make the debut of young KAM Corbin or O.J Phillips .Baugh is gone and I would either bring back Ramdin for a trial or find another keeper--we need a a wicket keeper batsman.Perhaps try S O Dowrich as a wicket keeper. The biggest problem still remains captaincy---who to make the captain. I would also try Jason Holder or KantaSingh

    My team (1) A. Barath, (2)K.C Braithwaite, (3)L. Simmons, (4)KAM Corbin/ O.Phillips, (5) Shiv, (6)Ramdhin/ Dowrich, (7)Russel, (8)Rampaul, (9)Edwards, (10)Bishoo and (11)Jason Holder/ Kantasingh.

  • Chan on June 26, 2011, 18:19 GMT

    I think all the members of the West Indies cricket board must be sacked and the greats like Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd, Gordon Greengage etc should be included in the board. They destroyed Brian Lara, arguably the best batsman in the world after Viv Richards.

  • Sree on June 26, 2011, 18:18 GMT

    Very well written. And not only West Indians but a lot of fans from other countries would be there with you on the points you make. For some time I have felt that its a matter of time and that West Indies team can only go up from here, only to see the team going further down. Under Sammy there's a certain stability which was not to be seen. He is not great player but a very earnest one. I also agree that unless the Board gets its act right, there is little hope. And heres hoping the best.

  • Fatz on June 26, 2011, 16:48 GMT

    Flair and technique...Both were the essentials of the great 70's & 80's Windies side. Sadly these are the very same stuff miss'n out the current side. All of bling and no other thing!

  • Pratik on June 26, 2011, 16:21 GMT

    A lovely article. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I, for one, feel that the West Indian attack is a bit underrated. In Rampaul, Roach, Edwards and Bishoo they have an attack that is definitely good and can threaten. Once Dwayne Bravo is back, you will have a good all rounder too. Plus there is Andre Russell. If Jerome Taylor sorts out his troubles and comes back, Windies wont be lacking firepower in the bowling department.

    It is the batting that needs some urgent attention. Barath promises a lot, but plays a rash stroke and gifts his wicket. But he is yound and will hopefully learn. Darren Bravo has what it takes to be a future great provided he sort out his spin woes. He will do well to seek out Lara for help. Lara was one Caribbean player who mastered spin - who can forget him taking Murali to cleaners in Sri Lanka. If Lendl Simmons can fulfill his potential better than his uncle Phil, he can slot in comfortably as an opener. Work needed nn the batting, but hope still floats.

  • Annalisa Beharry on June 26, 2011, 16:17 GMT

    Well said. People overlook the good for the bad. You said it! Thank you!

  • Soumya on June 26, 2011, 15:49 GMT

    It is really surprising how many non-West Indians want the team to do well. I'm also part of that brigade which has seen Lara-Walsh-Ambrose and have heard stories about Wes Hall from uncles and Richards-Greenidge from elder brothers. My heart simply bleeds from seeing all the empty stands...Where have the people gone, maybe they have disappeared with the great players... In any case, what the WI needs today is a belief, I agree that there are some good youngsters coming through...what is needed is that fierce West Indian pride which Ambrose talked about in a recent cricinfo article. For all lovers of the game, WI has to come about. Cricket just cannot afford to disappear there. It is where the romance in the game comes from, the pure unadultrated joy, the swagger and freedom...For our sake, Windies, come on...

  • Carl Browne on June 26, 2011, 15:29 GMT

    Hope, they say, springs eternal in the human breast and this piece remains positive that the West Indies team may yet rise again from the ashes. I share the same hope as long as we also remain realistic. The West Indies may never again achieve the dizzy heights of the 70s and 80s and it will only come close to doing again so when the deep fractures that now exist between WICB and WIPA are healed. A house divided against itself cannot stand, remember.

  • stephon on June 26, 2011, 14:24 GMT

    very good topic ..lol but i just cant see the west indies moving forward with gibson and co...

  • Anonymous on June 26, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    After Bolt retires, make sure he picks up cricket not soccer.

  • Kaushik on June 26, 2011, 9:48 GMT

    Thanks for your lovely message. I am an Indian. Nonetheless, I too grew up listening to stories from my Dad of Richards tearing through bowling attacks and Holding striking fear in batsmen with his skill. I even saw Ambrose & Bishop sending wickets for walks and Lara pulverising the best bowlers. They were inspirational.

    I pray as much as you do, for the domestic bickering to end and for Windies cricket to return to the glory of old.

  • trevor on June 26, 2011, 9:38 GMT

    Well spoken, I am a Caribbean Man, Cricket runs in my veins,I have seen the "great ones" also; Throughout my years I have observe it takes more than talent to become a champion.This West Indies team is filled with talent,Is the will to succeed present?Darren Sammy is not the problem we aren,t winning;He is dedicated hard working and he believes in the teams ability to win.He is not a Seymour Nurse or Basil Butcher, he is doing his best, he is putting forth a high effort--We must all support the team, This is a team effort. Sarwan seems to be in a funk, I am mentioning him primarily and Chanderpaul due to their senior positionin the team.Both of them are former captains--leadership must come from, then Simmons,Barath,Bravo and THE YOUNG BRIGADE will follow. We Can Win at Kensington Oval-good cricket.Support the West Indies.

  • Anand on June 26, 2011, 9:32 GMT

    It's really so sad to see west indies struggling in cricket. But still as an Indian I hope they regain their pride and once again reach the top of the ladder. Frankly, nobody enjoyed the slide of west indies, but everybody enjoying the downfall of Australia. Perhaps it has something to do with ,behavior, while at the top.

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  • Anand on June 26, 2011, 9:32 GMT

    It's really so sad to see west indies struggling in cricket. But still as an Indian I hope they regain their pride and once again reach the top of the ladder. Frankly, nobody enjoyed the slide of west indies, but everybody enjoying the downfall of Australia. Perhaps it has something to do with ,behavior, while at the top.

  • trevor on June 26, 2011, 9:38 GMT

    Well spoken, I am a Caribbean Man, Cricket runs in my veins,I have seen the "great ones" also; Throughout my years I have observe it takes more than talent to become a champion.This West Indies team is filled with talent,Is the will to succeed present?Darren Sammy is not the problem we aren,t winning;He is dedicated hard working and he believes in the teams ability to win.He is not a Seymour Nurse or Basil Butcher, he is doing his best, he is putting forth a high effort--We must all support the team, This is a team effort. Sarwan seems to be in a funk, I am mentioning him primarily and Chanderpaul due to their senior positionin the team.Both of them are former captains--leadership must come from, then Simmons,Barath,Bravo and THE YOUNG BRIGADE will follow. We Can Win at Kensington Oval-good cricket.Support the West Indies.

  • Kaushik on June 26, 2011, 9:48 GMT

    Thanks for your lovely message. I am an Indian. Nonetheless, I too grew up listening to stories from my Dad of Richards tearing through bowling attacks and Holding striking fear in batsmen with his skill. I even saw Ambrose & Bishop sending wickets for walks and Lara pulverising the best bowlers. They were inspirational.

    I pray as much as you do, for the domestic bickering to end and for Windies cricket to return to the glory of old.

  • Anonymous on June 26, 2011, 13:57 GMT

    After Bolt retires, make sure he picks up cricket not soccer.

  • stephon on June 26, 2011, 14:24 GMT

    very good topic ..lol but i just cant see the west indies moving forward with gibson and co...

  • Carl Browne on June 26, 2011, 15:29 GMT

    Hope, they say, springs eternal in the human breast and this piece remains positive that the West Indies team may yet rise again from the ashes. I share the same hope as long as we also remain realistic. The West Indies may never again achieve the dizzy heights of the 70s and 80s and it will only come close to doing again so when the deep fractures that now exist between WICB and WIPA are healed. A house divided against itself cannot stand, remember.

  • Soumya on June 26, 2011, 15:49 GMT

    It is really surprising how many non-West Indians want the team to do well. I'm also part of that brigade which has seen Lara-Walsh-Ambrose and have heard stories about Wes Hall from uncles and Richards-Greenidge from elder brothers. My heart simply bleeds from seeing all the empty stands...Where have the people gone, maybe they have disappeared with the great players... In any case, what the WI needs today is a belief, I agree that there are some good youngsters coming through...what is needed is that fierce West Indian pride which Ambrose talked about in a recent cricinfo article. For all lovers of the game, WI has to come about. Cricket just cannot afford to disappear there. It is where the romance in the game comes from, the pure unadultrated joy, the swagger and freedom...For our sake, Windies, come on...

  • Annalisa Beharry on June 26, 2011, 16:17 GMT

    Well said. People overlook the good for the bad. You said it! Thank you!

  • Pratik on June 26, 2011, 16:21 GMT

    A lovely article. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I, for one, feel that the West Indian attack is a bit underrated. In Rampaul, Roach, Edwards and Bishoo they have an attack that is definitely good and can threaten. Once Dwayne Bravo is back, you will have a good all rounder too. Plus there is Andre Russell. If Jerome Taylor sorts out his troubles and comes back, Windies wont be lacking firepower in the bowling department.

    It is the batting that needs some urgent attention. Barath promises a lot, but plays a rash stroke and gifts his wicket. But he is yound and will hopefully learn. Darren Bravo has what it takes to be a future great provided he sort out his spin woes. He will do well to seek out Lara for help. Lara was one Caribbean player who mastered spin - who can forget him taking Murali to cleaners in Sri Lanka. If Lendl Simmons can fulfill his potential better than his uncle Phil, he can slot in comfortably as an opener. Work needed nn the batting, but hope still floats.

  • Fatz on June 26, 2011, 16:48 GMT

    Flair and technique...Both were the essentials of the great 70's & 80's Windies side. Sadly these are the very same stuff miss'n out the current side. All of bling and no other thing!