WICB rejects Guyana’s agent proposal

By Iva Wharton

The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) has rejected the Guyana Government’s suggestion that the WICB appoint an agent to act on its behalf here as a means of ending the stalemate between the two sides over cricket.

Guyana’s proposal had been made at a hush-hush meeting in Trinidad on November 24, 2012 between Sport Minister Dr Frank Anthony and a WICB team led by its President Julian Hunte.

Held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Port-of-Spain, Anthony was accompanied by former West Indies captain Clive Lloyd who heads theInterim Management Committee which was appointed to run cricket here and which move led to the impasse with the WICB.

Julian Hunte

Following the meeting in Trinidad, Hunte responded to Anthony on November 25, 2012 rejecting the suggestion that an agent be appointed and affirming that the WICB was standing by its local affiliate, the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB).

In the letter, which Stabroek Sport has seen, Dr. Hunte said “The Board did not agree to your recommendation of
appointing an agent in Guyana to act on behalf of the Board. It is the Board’s consistent view that its shareholder of over eighty (80) years standing should continue to represent the interests of West Indies cricket in Guyana. Accordingly the Board has instructed Management to request a Guyana team of the GCB for participation in the upcoming regional tournaments”.

In the letter Dr. Hunte also said, “At that meeting I promised to give the Board of Directors of the WICB (“Board”) a report on the matters we discussed and to be guided by the decision of the Board.

The Board of Directors met to consider the report of our meeting. Upon receiving said report, the Board took the following decisions:

Dr Frank Anthony

1. That the Board recognizes the Guyana Cricket Board (“GCB”) as the sole governing body responsible for the administration, management and development of cricket in the Republic of Guyana;

2. That Management requests the GCB to provide a Guyana team to participate in the CT20 Tournament and the upcoming regional tournaments, and to set a date by which such teams are to be submitted”.

Dr. Hunte ended his missive by saying that he was looking forward to a speedy resolution of the substantive matters of those things that hinder the full enjoyment and participation of the sport in Guyana.

The WICB withdrew international cricket from Guyana last year after the government derecognized the GCB and named Lloyd to head an interim body to manage cricket pending the formulation of a new constitution for the cricket board and the holding of elections.

On Thursday, Dr. Anthony in responding to a query from this newspaper stated that he was awaiting a response from the WICB on the suggestion of the WICB appointing an agent in Guyana.

When contacted by Stabroek Sport, WICB’s Corporate Communications Officer Imran Khan, said that Hunte’s response had been sent to the Sport Minister via email on Sunday, November 25th. He said Hunte had given the Minister a commitment that he would take the issue to the Board of Directors and respond to the Minister within 48 hours. That commitment, Khan said, was kept in full.

Commenting on Minster Anthony’s statement that the WICB did not request of the government to select a team, Khan said, “The WICB wishes to reiterate that the WICB can only make requests for teams (to participate in the regional tournaments) of the rightful governing authority for cricket in each territory. There was an attempt by the IMC to provide a team for a previous tournament but this was not accepted by the WICB, as the WICB is the regional governing body for cricket and can only recognize teams from the rightful governing body for cricket in Guyana, which is the Guyana Cricket Board”.

He said too that the Minister was correct when he stated that the WICB did not inform the Government of Guyana of the deadline for submission of the team. The request and the deadline were communicated to the GCB which has always been the case.

Having missed the November 22nd deadline the WICB has now given the GCB a new deadline of December 5th to submit the team for the Caribbean Twenty20 tournament. The WICB says it is hopeful that all impediments to the GCB providing a team will be cleared and the GCB as the rightful governing body for cricket in Guyana will be allowed to meet this deadline. The WICB called on all parties to act judiciously in the best interest of cricket in Guyana and also ensure that no action they take prevents the Guyanese cricketers from pursuing their ambitions.

Anand Sanasie, Secretary of the former GCB when reached for a comment said the GCB is working to meet the new deadline set by the WICB.

Asked for a comment on a court injunction against GCB activities, Sanasie said he is not prepared to comment on any legal matters.

Trials, to name the Guyana team to contest the Caribbean Twenty20 tournament should start today weather permitting.

Lloyd had previously raised concerns about how the GCB could continue functioning in the face of the court injunction.

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