MELBOURNE, Australia, CMC – All-rounder Dwayne Bravo says he is still committed to playing for West Indies but was forced to quit Test cricket because of the poor treatment meted out to him by selectors.
Speaking ahead of his campaign in the Big Bash League for Melbourne Renegades, Bravo told media here that with little interest coming from selectors he had turned his attention to the lucrative Twenty20 leagues across the globe.
“Until earlier this year I was still interested to play Test cricket but I have yet to hear anything from any selector, what their plans are for me, what my position is,” Bravo lamented.
“I just decided it’s time to move on with my life and try to channel my energy in different places. I would have loved the opportunity to play Test cricket again but since being dropped back in 2010 I never got the chance and I just decided to call it a day.”
He continued: “I’m not shutting down my opportunities to represent the West Indies, I still 100 per cent want to play for the West Indies in one-day internationals and T20s.”
The 32-year-old played the last of his 40 Tests five years ago after scoring 2200 runs at an average of 31 and taking 86 wickets at an average of nearly 40. Following this protracted absence from the side, Bravo announced his retirement from the longer format in January this year.
He was appointed one-day captain in 2013 but axed a year-and-a-half later after he helped lead the players fight against the West Indies Cricket Board and the West Indies Players Association, which resulted in the controversial abandoned tour of India.
Bravo said many West Indies players felt more respected outside of the Caribbean, and this was behind their decision to ply their trade in tournaments like the Big Bash.
“I get frustrated at times, not only for myself but for all the other cricketers, Chris Gayle, Darren Sammy, Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell, we all want to represent West Indies,” Bravo said.
“But sometimes the way we have been treated over the years … why should we actually fight with West Indies’ cricket where the rest of the world opens their arms for us?
“Yes they pay us well but at the same time we never feel disrespect in any way when we play for those teams around the world. We feel love. We feel well-respected. Do we get that type of treatment back in the region? No we don’t.”
The Trinidadian has continued to feature in the West Indies T20 squad, however, and was part of the Sammy led squad which drew 1-1 with Sri Lanka in a two-match series last month.
However, with the ICC T20 World Cup slated to bowl off in March next year, Bravo said he was taking nothing for granted about his selection.
“I would love to think that I would be good enough and have done enough to get selected for the T20 World Cup but I’m not saying anything. I don’t know,” he mused.