Former West Indies fast bowler turned pundit Ian Bishop has lamented somewhat of a tumultuous introduction to global T20 cricket in the Caribbean, which he believes has set the region back.
The shortest format of the game, which began to gain prominence in the mid-2000s, initially had a bumpy introduction to the region as leagues clashed with the schedule of international cricket.
The scheduling clash, combined with the rules of the then administration, saw several of the team’s top players unable to take part in the longer formats of ODI and Test cricket. The discrepancy saw an experienced West Indies team claim two T20 World Championships but continue to struggle in the other formats.
Bishop believes the availability of the likes of Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Sunil Narine, and Kieron Pollard, during the period, could have added much-needed experience and firepower to the Windies line-up.
“In the West Indies initially, there was a bad effect on the game since the administrators did not know the value of T20 cricket and the ability of a player as a sole contractor where they had to choose when they wanted to play. We did not handle that well. We lost a few significant players from West Indies cricket for a period of time I wish did not happen,” Bishop told the Hindustan Times.
“And it’s only now when we see England allowing their players to go and play in the IPL. The West Indies have taken a different view now under their leadership that they need to allow their players to earn their living but when they were available, we will have a compromise. But we have missed so many important players. I think it’s set back West Indies cricket a little bit.” (Sportsmax)