2016
04.19

WICB Photo

In just under 100 days since the start of 2016, West Indies Cricket has three major world titles in two formats and three categories. The under 19, women and men now all have world titles.

It was the under 19s in the 50-over format in February. They spanked India by five wickets to hold the distinguished title of World Champion. A few weeks later, the women’s and men’s teams, decided, they were not to be outdone moved straight to the top of the pack when they wiped out Australia and England respectively.

Carlos Brathwaite, the man on strike, had to face Ben Stokes, a bowler whose experience outweighed his batting but the four sixes in a row set the world on fire. That handed the men’s team, its second hold on the title in the history of the competition. The West Indies people wherever they were in the world, joined in jubilation. That win made the West Indies team the only one to win the title twice after its win in 2012. What was even more impressive was the team had the same captain in Darren Sammy. That is by any standard, a remarkable achievement.

The win in the women’s category prevented Australia from gaining its fourth hold on that championship and with careful and strategic work from Captain, Stafanie Taylor and the 18-year-old Hayley Matthews, by the 10th over, gave indication that they were going to chase the imposing total of 148-5 made by the defending champion. That they did and won amazingly. The world stood still for a while.

Now the morning of April 4 when the people of the Caribbean woke up and realised that its 100-days wishes for this came through, three world titles from three teams in cricket – what a rallying that took place. Not without controversy, the region celebrated and is still celebrating.

WI TOPPLES BIG THREE

When you summarise all that has happened, the BIG THREE were slapped on their wrists but were also soundly beaten by this fair-sized region which did their homework, practiced and came to the party; while the BIG THREE is still left to wonder what happened. Contacts from those in the middle have since begun on their quest to find out “what’s happening in the West Indies?”

The truth is, over the last three years tremendous effort has been made to implement the high performance programme, where a 19-point development plan is spread across the six regions which summarily consists of an expanded four-day tournament; a more comprehensive yet intensive 50-over competition and an exciting T20 competition with allowable time to ply trade by the top performers in several leagues worldwide.

The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and its management of cricket in the Caribbean requires the cumulative support of the talented pool of athletes (116 – there are 11 women on retainer at different levels and 90 first class men); its technical support; the selection panel; game officials; management of its franchises, corporate partners, governments and its fan base.

The business of cricket is not without its fair share of controversy and the 2016 version remains fresh in our minds, but it is instructive that we are in a dynamic world where battle lines are crossed and drawn. The fact is the business model for cricket must meet the criteria of producing top performing athletes for top salaries with a management structure that facilitates continued growth. The Board accepts that as its mandate.

The Board congratulates the players, coaches and the entire Caribbean for its efforts in making this dream a reality. As the region looks forward to hosting the upcoming Tri-Nation series with Australia and South in June; the India test tour in the summer; the Caribbean Premier League also in the summer and England’s women in October, we believe the opportunity for partnership with cricket is ripe with possibilities. We invite the region to come on board.

-WICB

Related News

No Comment.

Add Your Comments:



*