We should shift responsibility for the success or failure of the WI team to a manager

Dear Editor,

 

I believe we should, in the best interests of West Indian cricket, consider the steps that can be taken to improve our team’s performance that avoid those truly fundamental changes that have proved unattainable over the short or even medium term. Caricom may be able to change the governing structure of the WICB in the next decade or two, but for those of us for whom time is running out, and who have been good supporters over several decades (indeed in some cases since at least the nineteen fifties) fairness demands that we be given some consideration. Selection of West Indies teams has always been a problem, caused by considerations of regional, ethnic, class or institutional loyalties, or at least by the perception of the existence of such considerations. Over the last decade or so with the increase in professionalism, or at any rate, in job opportunities for cricketers, the emphasis on institutional loyalty seems to have overtaken all other considerations in team selections, with the result that it has become almost impossible to select players purely on merit.

I respectfully suggest that we could circumvent those issues by shifting the responsibility for success or failure of the team squarely on the shoulders of a manager whose compensation and tenure are made a function of his or her success or failure. In simple terms, we should consider appointing some individual (that person can be one already in the employ of the WICB) to take full responsibility for the team`s performance with the absolute right to select the squad and team including the captain, that would represent the region in international competitions. There should be no limitation in the selection criteria other than obvious legal requirements like citizenship and age (not certain about age).To make it clear, such an  approach is common in other sports, and is grounded in the reasonable belief that such managers have the most important motivation for winning ‒ namely their own success. We could in that way eliminate the need for a panel of selectors, who are not only selected themselves with an eye to satisfying regional interests, but who must find it difficult, if not impossible, not to consider factors other than merit, in the process of selection.

 

Yours faithfully,

Romain Pitt

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