‘WI must keep working’ – CWI chief of selectors Harper insists ability to earn during global pandemic a positive

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Cricket West Indies chief of selectors Roger Harper believes the opportunity for cricketers to earn, despite the ongoing global pandemic, should be seen as a positive with many others not so fortunate.

Recently, several players, including team captains Jason Holder, Kieron Pollard, and Roston Chase have pulled out of the upcoming tour of Bangladesh after citing health and safety concerns.

With the team about to embark on its third tour in a few months, concerns have been raised regarding the mental effect of having to quarantine for weeks at a time, in order to take part in these competitions.  The West Indies were one of the first teams to resume playing international cricket when they toured England in July, under heavy quarantine restrictions.

The Windies then managed to keep busy with a tour of New Zealand earlier this month and are lined up to tour Bangladesh next month.

While admitting that it was a concern that CWI took seriously and one that was still being assessed, Harper insists things have to be looked at in a positive manner in light of the uncertainty the pandemic has unfurled.

“If you look at things from the other perspective there are a lot of people looking for the opportunity to work and continuing to do.  I still think cricket is providing that opportunity for several people,” Harper told members of the media following the naming of an adjusted West Indies squad on Tuesday.

“I know there is a vaccine on the horizon and in some places, it’s being doled out.  We don’t know how long before it gets to this region but if cricket is going to survive, we have to seek every opportunity to play the sport at the international level and continue to perform.  Life in the general sense is being affected because several people are out of work and would love the opportunity to work.”

As part of attempts to mitigate the situation, the CWI has included a psychologist as part of the touring management team.  (Sportsmax)