THE DECLINE THESIS OF WEST INDIAN CRICKET
(1975 – present day)
Vivian Richards smashes the ball to the boundary! Another impressive win to add to the belt of the West Indies team. With players such as Clive Lloyd, Michael Holding, Gordon Greenidge, Deryck Murray, and Rohan Kanhai to name a few, many have been pondering what has happened to that beloved “golden era”.
I think that the 1970s and the 1980s were and in fact a different time period. It is difficult to compare 2 time periods, present day and the ‘70s and ‘80s. However, it is easy to showcase the decline of West Indies Cricket from then to present day.
The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) is responsible for the development of the game in the Caribbean. The WICB has not done enough in this regard. Each member state of the West Indies are supposed to contribute a sum of money to the Board each year and the Board thus repatriates the monies accordingly, whether it is for development of the game or otherwise; whether this has been done cricket pundits of the West Indies do not even have a clue.
Other sports such as football and basketball have been competing with cricket in the territories. In the 1970s, cricket was “king”, no-one knew about football! Everyone knew about bat and ball. However, the blame for the decline in cricket has been the failure of the WICB to effectively manage and promote the sport. It is part of their portfolio to develop the game.
On the other hand it would be unfair to solely cast the blame on the WICB – afterall over the past few years the game has evolved, being more scientific. In the England team for example, there are more Doctors than there are players. The West Indies team has remained more archaic in their approach. However, the island territories are supposed to supply the WICB with the appropriate funds to develop the game and this has not been done. Thus West Indies languish around the 7th position in the International Cricket Council’s...
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