Pybus fuss par for the course
WE LIKE it so.
I won’t be among those helping to dry crocodile tears over the appointment of Richard Pybus as interim head coach of the West Indies.
Some of those who are now fretting over the appointment were remarkably silent when Cricket West Indies (CWI) showed the door to Ottis Gibson and Phil Simmons.
It was the general sentiment then that neither got a fair break when they parted ways with CWI.
Who stood up for Sir Curtly Ambrose when he lost his pick as bowling consultant?
Perhaps it wasn’t politically correct or prudent to oppose those decisions openly , not owning the fact that there is always the calm before the storm. This latest storm in West Indies cricket seemed to be devastating in some quarters, hitting like the proverbial ton of bricks, causing mental pain which usually takes longer to heal.
I think what hurts the most is that it comes at a time when the debate across the region favours a West Indian for the top job.
The one certainty is that Pybus didn’t select himself. Even if he was handpicked, as has been alleged in some quarters, it wasn’t his call.
His detractors are only complaining on the grounds that he isn’t
West Indian. Apart from that, he appears to be well qualified for the job given his knowledge of regional cricket.
In the words of CWI’S director of cricket Jimmy Adams: “Richard comes into the role with previous international experience having worked with both Pakistan and Bangladesh. Due to his current and previous involvement in CWI, he possesses a good working knowledge of both players and coaches as the team prepares for important home series against England and India with the 2019 World Cup to be played between those series.
In the release announcing Pybus’ appointment this paragraph was the most intriguing: “Meanwhile, the
CWI board of directors have already approved a succession planning programme for regional coaches and will be simultaneously be conducting a regional search in order to appoint a long-term head coach for the Windies men’s team from
September 2019 onwards.”
Even if the reference from this is that the next head coach will be
West Indian, what difference will it make if that person isn’t given a fair break to prove himself or even if from time to time he sees things differently from his employers and it is held against him?
Even so, the prosperity and renaissance we hope for in West Indies cricket fortunes may not rest solely on who is the coach. After all, we have had coaches of different shades and nationalities the past 20 years without getting the desired results on a sustained basis.
We might really need an overhaul in the way we operate. A change of name of the parent body has only been cosmetic. People still complain about the same issues and CWI still give the same answers. Therefore, no solution.
Yet again, we have division in the ranks ahead of a major series.
This was routine when we were called the West Indies Cricket Board and earlier when it had the word “control” tied to it.
This period has easily been one of the most contentious in West Indies cricket. The Pybus issue is just a microcosm.
Why are we losing sleep over it when clearly we like it so? Andi Thornhill is an experienced award-winning freelance sports journalist.
Email andithorn[email protected]
THERE WAS LITTLE OUTCRY when Ottis Gibson was dismissed as West Indies coach.