It may have come as a big surprise to fans of West Indies cricket in Guyana to read of the West Indies Cricket Board’s (WICB) decision to terminate the third Test slated for June 26-30, 2014 at the National Stadium in Guyana.
This match would likely be Chris Gayle’s final Test match and Shiv Chanderpaul’s unprecedented 156th Test. What an occasion, and location – a country where Gayle has found his second home in the Caribbean and where Chanderpaul, one of the Caribbean’s greatest sons, emerged.
But now all of this grandeur has dissipated owing to an organisation that shows all the signs of a cartel. The WICB has moved the match on the grounds of its apparent disagreement with Guyana’s Cricket Administration Bill.
It must be noted that 90 per cent of Guyanese, served by their parliamentarians in the form of APNU and the PPP, voted in favour of this long-awaited bill. The will of the Guyanese people has been declared and must be respected.
The attitude shown to a sitting Caribbean head of state by the Whycliffe Cameron-led WICB administration in the past few days is so contemptuous and disrespectful that it also insults all Guyanese and all Caribbean people by extension. Two of six board members of the WICB have adopted legislation similar to that of Guyana’s Cricket Administration Bill, but these countries have not suffered any penalties over the years when their bills were enacted.
Thus, this punitive approach by the management of the WICB towards Guyana raises tremendous suspicions, because it becomes very apparent that the WICB fears new directors emanating from Guyana who may or not support the WICB’s current approach.
This situation, therefore, begs the question: What is the WICB seeking to protect from new entrants to this elite group? Is it the contentious deal struck among the Australian, Indian and English cricket boards which saw the WICB duly supporting? Were garnishes given? Is there an illicit award of international matches to particular countries based on a favoured voting approach?
East Coast Demerara, Guyana