Joey Carew will no longer be a selector for West Indies cricket. The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) convenor of selectors submitted a letter to the regional body on Monday advising them of his withdrawal from the post he has occupied, on and off, over the last 20 years.
Carew's decision comes on the heels of a public disagreement with Brian Lara over the choice of personnel for the WI squad during the recently-concluded Test series with India which ended in a 1-0 win for the visitors. Other points of contention also included the delayed notification of Lara about his role as a selector, and the bias of Caribbean pitches towards the Indian bowlers.
But, with the WICB set to decide on selectors for a two-year term tomorrow at a special meeting in Barbados, Carew said those factors did not play a part in his final decision. "Those things had nothing to do with it," he told the Express. "I advised the Board that I had re-considered my position and decided to let someone else have an opportunity...have a go at it. I'm just passing the baton on, letting someone else have a say in the future of West Indies cricket."
Referring to a Caribbean Media Corporation report last Saturday that claimed he only had the support of one WICB director, Carew explained: "I'm not sure how they would know that. As far as I'm concerned that would be almost impossible to know but, as I said, that had nothing to bear on my decision."
The WICB are expected to choose selectors from among Andy Roberts, former West Indies fast bowler, whose last term as a selector was over a decade ago, and new candidates Derrick Parry of Nevis, the 51-year-old former West Indies offspinner, as well as Dominican Sebastien Lockhart, the 50-year old former Windward Islands opening batsman.
Current selectors, Gordon Greenidge, former West Indies opener, and Clyde Butts, should offer themselves for re-election. Looking back on his tenure, Carew said his most trying moments as a selector were during the Kerry Packer era, as well as the nearly two-year period covering the impasse between the WICB and the West Indies Players Association, when various players failed to offer themselves for selection.
He said the highlight of his stint was in helping to choose a West Indies ODI squad that has moulded into a good team. "The ODI team is a solid team and is capable of competing with the best teams in the world," he stated. "But we still have a lot of work to do when it comes to the Test squad. And now that will be the challenge of the people who come in as selectors. I wish them all the best."
Carew added that although he would no longer be involved as a selector, he would certainly be available to contribute in any area that is requested of him. He also thanked the Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board for "the trust they have placed in me, by putting me up as a candidate for the position over the years".