WI cricket in dan­ger, needs pro­tec­tion, says Grange

Stabroek News - - SPORT -

(Ja­maica Observer) KINGSTON, Ja­maica – Minister of Cul­ture, Gen­der, En­ter­tain­ment and Sport Olivia Grange has likened West Indies cricket to an el­e­ment of cul­tural her­itage that is in dan­ger and in need of pro­tec­tion. Grange made the com­ment at the St Catherine Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion Awards Cer­e­mony where she ex­pressed sat­is­fac­tion that the lo­cal cricket pro­gramme “was at a good place”.

But the minister said she was con­cerned about re­gional cricket fol­low­ing a string of poor per­for­mances by the West Indies team, in­clud­ing the re­cent poor per­for­mance against min­nows Bangladesh.

“Let me say, straight up, that I am a life­long sup­porter of West Indies cricket. I can­not think of a rea­son to ever with­draw my sup­port from the West Indies. The Windies rep­re­sent us. They are a part of who we are. They are a part of me. So you know ex­actly how I feel when I saw the re­cent re­sults against Bangladesh,” said Grange. Bangladesh com­pleted a se­ries sweep against the West Indies in the re­cent two-Test se­ries — each time de­feat­ing the Windies within three days.

“West Indies cricket, the men's game ... is in dan­ger, and it needs pro­tec­tion,” said Grange.

She drew a con­trast be­tween the per­for­mance of the cur­rent men's team and the women's team.

“Why do the women look so good — even with­out ad­e­quate sup­port? And why aren't the men do­ing bet­ter? Is it lead­er­ship? Is it tal­ent? Is it com­mit­ment?” Grange ques­tioned.

West Indies women went to the semi-fi­nals be­fore fall­ing to the even­tual cham­pi­ons Aus­tralia in the re­cent T-20 World Cup.

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Olivia Grange

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