West Indies news

WICB chief executive Hilaire to step down

Tariq Engineer

July 5, 2012

Comments: 17 | Text size: A | A

Ramnaresh Sarwan is congratulated on reaching his fifty by Chris Gayle, West Indies v England, 1st Test, Kingston, 2nd day, February 5, 2009
Ernest Hilaire, during his stint with the WICB, had been involved in disputes with Chris Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan © AFP
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Ernest Hilaire, the chief executive of the WICB whose tenure has been marked by standoffs with a number of senior players, most notably Chris Gayle, has decided not to seek a renewal of his contract when it expires in October, ESPNcricinfo has learned.

Hilaire has already informed the WICB board of directors of his intention not to continue in the role and they have appointed a recruitment agency to find a replacement. He has been appointed St Lucia's new ambassador in London by the newly elected St Lucia Labour party government.

He took over as chief executive in November 2009, when he was given a three-year contract, and presided over a somewhat tumultuous time in West Indies cricket as the team struggled to win matches. However, the side has shown improved competitiveness under the captaincy of Darren Sammy recently, especially in the limited-overs formats, and espouses a commitment to playing as a team.

Hilaire had also been involved in high profile disputes with Dinanath Ramnarine, the former head of the West Indies Players' Association, and a number of senior players, including Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan. Gayle's troubles with the board began when he chose to play in the 2011 IPL and miss the home series against Pakistan. It was only in June 2012 that Gayle's exile ended after he signed a CARICOM-brokered agreement with the WICB. Sarwan has not played for West Indies since June 2011, having lost his central contract in 2010 on fitness grounds.

In May 2012, Hilaire, said the selectors should focus on picking a strong collective unit rather than one just comprising 11 star players. "For a decade or so the selectors were guided by a process which had them arriving at the eleven best players to take the field," Hilaire had said. "With the eleven best players on the park our results went from bad to worse and yet worse still.

Tariq Engineer is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (July 8, 2012, 21:37 GMT)

Please let me thank DR.HILAIRE for his great work at the WICB as its CEO . He brought back "discipline" to West Indies Cricket which we all see is paying off .Let me also add Coach Mr. GIBSON to that list of putting WI cricket "FIRST" way before personalities. We all can see the fruits of their work when the "experience players" came back showing a "new attitude" to the game while in WI colours .

Posted by kunta1st on (July 8, 2012, 21:23 GMT)

Its time now they look to Jamaica or Guyana to replace this guy.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 16:53 GMT)

Sounds like what persons are asking for is a puppet to be the next chief. Mr Hiliare by his brave actions has shown us that a team without stars can challenge major teams where the team with the stars were constantly getting ran over and failing for over the last decade. Thank You Mr Hiliare!

Posted by cracker2012 on (July 6, 2012, 16:22 GMT)

"Gayle's troubles with the board began when he chose to play in the 2011 IPL and miss the home series against Pakistan." - This sentence is not completely accurate. The West Indies squad to face Pakistan in the home series had already been selected and announced with several of the senior players left out of the squad, including Gayle. At the time, the WICB explained that they were looking towards the future saying "Consistent with the policy to expose young players, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan were not selected." - The WICB had negotiated with Pollard and Bravo to go and play in the IPL and miss the Pakistan series, but never communicated with Gayle in a similar way. It was only after this, that Gayle decided to take up a contract with the IPL.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 15:34 GMT)

Gone are the days when sports were a past time; we are talking about big business where millions of dollars are involved; to assume that all it takes is a cricketing pedigree to succeed reflects the abysmal state of the game in the west indies; to quote Sir Garfield on this matter is unfortunate; anyway how many people in the Caribbean over 45 have no knowledge of cricket be it as a player, spectator or otherwise?

Posted by Metman on (July 6, 2012, 11:15 GMT)

@Windiesfactchecker !..."The West Indies squad to face Pakistan in the home series had already been selected and announced with several of the senior players left out of the squad,including Gayle "....that sentence is not completly accurate either!.The facts are....Gayle on learning that Sammy was going to continue as capt.said he was INJURED ,and that he had played through the World Cup with that injury...note!.. NOBODY knew about that injury ! Gayle was NOT selected for the series against Pakistan because HE said he was INJURED....he was NOT dropped ..Soon after Gayle turned up in India to play in the IPL,and the Board asked him "how come you said you were injured,and yet can play in the IPL",that is when the " tug of war" started between him and the Board ,mate !

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 9:03 GMT)

Well done you said it would not have been an easy task..you did your best and i think it is very good.

Posted by   on (July 6, 2012, 4:36 GMT)

we need more than an ex player, we need someone who understands, marketing, business management, labor relations, someone who understands finance, someone who can continue the work that Hilaire started, it does not matter if this individual is an ex cricketer or not. a well qualified individual can do the job, look at other successful teams around the world most of them do not have ex players managing but rather business people, people with MBA's,

Posted by WindiesFactChecker on (July 6, 2012, 4:18 GMT)

"Gayle's troubles with the board began when he chose to play in the 2011 IPL and miss the home series against Pakistan." - This sentence is not completely accurate. The West Indies squad to face Pakistan in the home series had already been selected and announced with several of the senior players left out of the squad, including Gayle. At the time, the WICB explained that they were looking towards the future saying "Consistent with the policy to expose young players, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Chris Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan were not selected." - The WICB had negotiated with Pollard and Bravo to go and play in the IPL and miss the Pakistan series, but never communicated with Gayle in a similar way. It was only after this, that Gayle decided to take up a contract with the IPL.

Posted by kobler on (July 6, 2012, 2:46 GMT)

Gone to soon or not soon enough?

Posted by tappee74 on (July 6, 2012, 2:28 GMT)

Be it good news or bad news,what has been done will be recorded in the annals of history.WE must thank him, for he has served,he has offered only from the contents of his heart.God bless him.

Posted by bajah on (July 6, 2012, 2:24 GMT)

it was about time he left.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 23:57 GMT)

I agree with SirSobers comment, need somebody who understands the game and players, while other issues like labour relations, investment etc can be tackled in a structured manner. The game of cricket is above anyone else.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 21:59 GMT)

This might be reggae music to the ears of some. But we must be grateful for the contribution Hilaire has made to WI cricket,and he has. I wish him well in his future endeavour. And may God bless him.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 21:27 GMT)

anyone and everyone who is named as part of the future WI management MUST and should demonstrate: a) management experience, high level involvement in negotiating corporate contracts, labor relations and conflict resolution, experience marketing a sports franchise, public relations and press interaction, b) University education, preferably business management, not a Phd in Zoology, or agriculture. Lastly, this individual must agree to a 360 evaluation, i.e by players, coaches, staff and other members in the organization. His success must be measurable not only in the immediate success of the WI cricket, but by the growth of investments, TV revenues, copyright revenues from our great cricketers, future revenues generated from Gayle and others. Have 1,3,5 and 10 year strategic plans in place and he must be able to defend, modify and justify annually.

Posted by   on (July 5, 2012, 20:36 GMT)

Thank you for you tenure Sir and your efforts in trying to improve our team, whether it was done in the right way is left to personal opinions. Atleast you tried to be progressive.

Posted by BRUTALANALYST on (July 5, 2012, 19:53 GMT)

Maybe now we should actually have an ex-player rather than a businessman running things.

Comments have now been closed for this article

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