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Anatomy of a back-stabbing: Live Wire looks at WICB’s treatment of Simmons

If Phil Simmons didn’t care whether West Indies won or lost cricket matches, he would still be in a job today. But he did. So he isn’t.

Photo: Suspended West Indies cricket team coach Phil Simmons. (Copyright Phillip Spooner/WICB Media)
Photo: Suspended West Indies cricket team coach Phil Simmons.
(Copyright Phillip Spooner/WICB Media)

From the moment Simmons chose to retain the notion that, as West Indies cricket coach, he deserved the best players available to win matches, he was on a collision course with the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB). And there was only ever going to be one winner there.

Not literally of course. There are no winners in Caribbean cricket anymore, just losers. Why else would the regional cricket boards re-elect Dave Cameron as president in March?

In Cameron’s first term he oversaw the total breakdown of trust between cricketers and administrators, the first abandonment of a Test series outside of war or natural disaster—that’s if one doesn’t consider Cameron himself to be a natural disaster—and put the WICB on the verge of bankruptcy by exposing regional cricket to a US$42 million lawsuit from the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India).

Re-electing Cameron is like west African governments finding the cure for Ebola but opting to give the disease another two years, just to see what happens.

And that brings us to Simmons: the eager-beaver Trinidadian who represented West Indies back when the maroon cap was cricket’s equivalent to a Barcelona first team jersey.

Photo: West Indies cricket coach Phil Simmons (right) talks to his former Test captain Denesh Ramdin. (Copyright AFP 2015)
Photo: West Indies cricket coach Phil Simmons (right) talks to his former Test captain Denesh Ramdin.
(Copyright AFP 2015)

Part of Simmons probably wanted to play a role in the restoration of the West Indian game. The other half probably knew he could only get so far as the Ireland coach and wondered what he could accomplish with players like Kraigg Braithwaite, Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine at his disposal.

Due diligence works both ways though. And Simmons ought to have known that much of West Indies’ problems exist above its coach’s pay grade.

Maybe Simmons hoped to coax Cameron and company into the light by tantalising the WICB board with the prospect of a return to winning ways.

If so, Simmons either overestimated his skills as a salesman. Or he underestimated the twisted bitterness that Cameron, CEO Michael Muirhead and Director of Cricket Richard Pybus nurse towards young West Indian cricketers.

Bravo and the West Indies team in India asked only that Cameron retain their existing Memorandum of Understanding until he could speak to his key employees face to face.

Photo: West Indies Players Association (WIPA) president Wavell Hinds (right) and West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) president Dave Cameron shake hands over the players'  controversial CBA/MOU in September 2014. (Courtesy WIPA)
Photo: West Indies Players Association (WIPA) president Wavell Hinds (right) and West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) president Dave Cameron shake hands over the players’ controversial CBA/MOU in September 2014.
(Courtesy WIPA)

The WICB responded with indignation not seen since the Afrikaner National Party stubbornly tried to preserve apartheid.

They preferred to let West Indies cricket go bust than sit across the table from the players whose exploits on the field pay their salaries.

And now Simmons wants to bring those boys back just because he thinks it would help West Indies win matches? Seriously?!

Pybus is probably picking a spot between T20 captain Darren Sammy’s shoulder blades as we speak. It would complete the cull, as he has already seen off the Test and ODI captains, Denesh Ramdin and Bravo respectively.

Let us not play dumb—and I’m looking at you here selector Courtney Walsh.

The trio at the WICB’s helm all accepted their respective posts between 2012 and 2013. At the time, West Indies was the defending T20 World Cup champion and ranked seventh in the world in Tests and One Day Internationals and second in T20.

Photo: West Indies players celebrate their World T20 success in 2012. (Courtesy khelnama.com)
Photo: West Indies players celebrate their World T20 success in 2012.
(Courtesy khelnama.com)

And how have Cameron, Muirhead and Pybus done?

Well, the West Indies team is now eighth in the Test rankings, ninth in ODIs and fifth in T20. And the region has not lifted a trophy or won a single Test against a higher-ranked nation during that period.

Not until Simmons got here anyway.

When West Indies beat England by five wickets at Bridgetown in May, it was the first time the regional team had beaten anyone higher up the Test rankings since a win over Pakistan at Georgetown in April 2011.

Perhaps Mr Live Wire should put that another way.

The last time the West Indies punched above its weight in a Test match: Andy Carroll was at Liverpool, Osama Bin Laden was alive and Jack Warner was still a FIFA vice-president.

And yet Pybus, who claimed in a 2014 report that his mission was to make West Indies the number one cricket team in the world, did not think that their most successful coach in five years, Simmons, and team captain Jason Holder might be better placed to decide which players offer the best chance for success in Sri Lanka.

Photo: Dwayne Bravo (right) and Kieron Pollard cross for a run during active duty for the West Indies Cricket Tea,. (Copyright AFP 2015)
Photo: Dwayne Bravo (right) and Kieron Pollard cross for a run during active duty for the West Indies Cricket Tea,.
(Copyright AFP 2015)

Instead, Simmons was suspended via email and sent to bed like Oliver Twist.

“The chairman didn’t even have the balls to see me personally, he got one of his henchmen to do it for him… It was a political decision… But what goes around, comes around and he was sacked as chairman shortly afterward!”

That was not Simmons. It was an interview Pybus gave to Border cricket after he was sacked by the Pakistan Cricket Board.

“What goes around, comes around…”

One can only hope.

There is irony everywhere. Eldine Baptiste will replace Simmons as coach for the Sri Lanka series.

Baptiste was sacked by Kenya after falling out with his senior players and losing all six matches at the 2011 World Cup, including a five wicket defeat to Canada. He applied for the West Indies coaching job, earlier this year, but could not compete with Simmons’ CV.

Photo: Former Kenya coach and current West Indies selector and caretaker coach, Eldine Baptiste.
Photo: Former Kenya coach and current West Indies selector and caretaker coach, Eldine Baptiste.

So, the WICB made Baptiste a selector instead and, after ensuring his employers got their way by helping outvote Simmons and chairman of the selectors, Clive Lloyd, he gets to be coach after all—albeit as a caretaker for now.

What company in the world would give one person the job of reshaping its fortunes and then give a lesser candidate the chance to undermine him by withholding his most valuable tools?

That was just to see if you were still awake. Of course the WICB would do just that.

It makes perfect sense if you don’t think about it. And they probably don’t.

Hands up if you think the West Indies players are dying to hear what pearls of wisdom Baptiste has to offer…

Baptiste still needed two other selectors to vote against Lloyd and Simmons and to disregard team captain Jason Holder’s plea to allow Pollard and Bravo to contribute once more to the game they love.

And one of those selectors was Walsh.

Photo: Former legendary West Indies bowler Courtney Walsh.
Photo: Former legendary West Indies bowler Courtney Walsh.

No, it was not enough that Cameron, Muirhead and Pybus are crushing the souls of our young cricket stars. They are also smashing the backbones of our old cricket icons.

The entire West Indies team should get to London by Thursday from where they will head for Sri Lanka.

Or maybe some players will break free from camp, sneak on to a train, avoid Hungary and get to German soil.

Granted, it is impossible to top Syria president Bashar al-Assad’s inhumanity to his own people.

But who in Germany’s Immigration Department could not melt when he hears what Cameron did to Walsh.

And Simmons?

Photo: Former West Indies cricketers Dwayne Bravo (right) and Kieron Pollard. (Copyright AFP 2015)
Photo: Former West Indies cricketers Dwayne Bravo (right) and Kieron Pollard.
(Copyright AFP 2015)

His attempts to sell Cameron’s cartel on winning matches by picking players they don’t like, were like peddling vegan pies at KFC.

Not surprisingly, they did not bite.

About Mr. Live Wire

Mr. Live Wire
Mr. Live Wire is an avid news reader who translates media reports for persons who can handle the truth. And satire. Unlike Jack Nicholson, he rarely yells.

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197 comments

  1. I THINK FINALLY T&T SHOULD GO IT ALONE, OUR PLAYERS STARRED IN EVERY CT20 GAME, AND INTERNATIONAL CT20s. HOW MUCH MORE ABUSE CAN WE TAKE. BEFORE ANY ONE JUMP ON MY THROAT, WHY DON’T WE WE HAVE A WI FOOTBALL TEAM AGAIN

    • Yeah, man. I agree with that. Let’s not attempt to solve the problem; let’s find a way around way that seems to work. Yeah, mon! And you see England inviting T& for a three-Test series, right? Ditto Australia, ent?
      Jesus! Like deh put we so!

  2. “If Phil Simmons didn’t care whether West Indies won or lost cricket matches, he would still be in a job today. But he did. So he isn’t.” Mr. livewire

  3. These are all lessons learnt… Does the WICB function on a morality of it own.

  4. One thing that I can’t understand is how come nobody is prepared to question whether a man like Courtney Walsh could seriously be accused of bowing to outside interference in doing his duties as a Selector.

    • Gerard, I missed the programme but I think Andre Baptiste may have provided a clue in the teaser to this week’s i95.5 Thursday sports special. is it a fact, he asked, that Courtney Walsh has just landed a contract with the ICC courtesy the WICB? His question, not mine!
      We should keep our ears open for the answer…

  5. I think PM Rowley should have a re-think of his no Caricom interference approach. Windies Cricket cannot continue on this road to oblivion. Grenada’s PM has already voiced his opinion and the other PMs must get into the act. Enough is enough.

    • Raymond, the politicians have their own problems to solve. In my view, Rowley is right to decide to stay out of it AND OBSERVE. It may become necessary for the politicians to intervene but for the moment, the politics will suffice. And politics is not about politicians but about people.
      This is a problem that cricket fans have to solve, cricket fans and cricketers. What, for instance, do you imagine would have happened if we had been able to convince the players not to go to Sri Lanka in protest against the WICB’s high-handedness? Were my son or my brother on the team that is what I would have done…or tried to do

  6. On anther thread I posed the rhetorical question ‘Is West Indies cricket beyond repair?’ At first it was the WICB against the players, now it the WICB, the WIPA and the players, talk about a house divided against itself! I guess it says something that there’s people still willing to discuss the appalling state of WI cricket. Has anyone noticed what has happened to the Windies fan base? WI cricket is bankrupt in every sense of the word and it’s nothing new. The WICB is an excellent example of a neo-colonial institution existing in a modern world, it survives yet fails to thrive. It’s all about the exercise of power. Why was Cameron’s able to avoid censure over his Gayle twitter blunder? Why was he re-elected after India? But Cameron is merely a symptom of the problem, that didn’t start now, that continues to plague us! .http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/605998.html.

    • “Apres ca,” the French say, “on tire l’echelle.” Loosely translated, I guess you could say it means, “We could stop talking now.” “Nutten more to say.”
      The bankruptcy is a regional problem and it’s not limited to cricket. But you must have noticed the wide variety of voices making themselves heard here on wired868. This forum is slowly becoming a place where people are not afraid to talk freely and frankly about our problems. If that continues, I feel sure that that dialogue will enrich us all.

  7. From the moment I saw Cameron was re-elected my heart sank. Now we’re seeing the further disintegration of our cricket, as if things weren’t bad enough!
    I would like to know what sweet deal he offered to get the regional boards to re-elect him.

  8. Phil remember what father Foley taught us up at the Cross right will always prevail. Depp inside the West Indian cricket community is aware you are the man to restore pride to our game, so pray and ask for what you need never fearing anything or any one. I pray that this does not make you loose faith in what you set out to achieve, stay the course my good friend, stay the course.

  9. Is said before , The Board of WICB somewhere along their line of illogical thinking, believes that because they have a “Flag” means that the WICB is an “independent State” with the Caricom region, and is so doing can lay claim to “sovereignity”being accountable to no one.

  10. Same shit different day , time for Trinidad to move on . It may take ten or fifteen years to build and make Test status but so be it . It would also be a fantastic catalyst to build our counties patriotism , something that will go far beyond the sporting arena , and PRICELESS !!!!

  11. We now know where the WICB got the bad advice from!!! ? ? ?

  12. clive lloyd have no balls!…

  13. Haha! Good Luck with Gerard….send him and Cameron & co to play the game, they could do with a good knees up at taxpayers expense. Pinard is the classic case of how it shouldnt be done and he refuses to budge

  14. Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard “We have a tendency though to be lax in our criticism of the Players while being at the other end of the spectrum where the Board is concerned. Admittedly, much of it has been deserved (give a dog a bad name) but too many of us are simply being unfair in the current issue.”

    That is certainly not consistent with how media/fans around the caribbean act in most controversies that pop up in West Indies cricket. In fact its the total opposite.

    For example we have the continuous perception that Bravo & Pollard & other T20 regular players like Gayle, Narine, Simmons, Russel are mercenaries which is why they deserve limited sympathy for roles they played in India pull out.

    However few people want to blame the WICB for being the terrible player relations negotiators

    According to the caricom court of justice down on charlotte street – when Dinanath Ramnarine was president every time WIPA took WICB to court of players issues they LOST! – That is not perception or opinion – the law say that – so why does give WICB benefit of the doubt in these scandals over players & the current case of Simmons ?

    • Colin Benjamin, we are all well aware of the deficiencies of the past where the WICB is concerned, but I do believe that in recent years there has been a marked difference in its approach – not perfect, by any means, but significantly improved, in my opinion anyway. For one, the much improved relationship between the WICB and WIPA seems to have gone unnoticed.

    • But Gerard the players are abandoning WIPA. That puts the WICB at a worse position than before. Because a single body to discuss players’ grievances is as much a plus to the WICB as it is to the players.

    • Ha if Dinanath Ramnarine wasn’t alive I might suggest he would be close to be turning in his grave at what WIPA has become since Hinds took over since India tour saga.

      So that’s a very weak example to highlight WICB improvement in player relations or whatever area.

      Not only have all senior players abandoned WIPA – but they remain firm that new mou/cba that WICB/WIPA agreed to is terrible. We are indeed very lucky many more seniors have not followed elder Bravo and Simmons into test retirement because of it.

    • “The players are abandoning WIPA”? Nothing could be further from the truth, from what I understand. Because of the new CBA/MOU, scores of regional players are now able to earn a decent living from cricket, unlike past years when only a handful of them received the lion’s share of the spoils. It is a shame that sports journalists are unwilling to dig deeper into the new player arrangements and learn for themselves whether the changes are good or bad for our future.

    • What WIPA has become is a real inclusive bargaining agent for ALL first class cricketers in the Caribbean, rather than an exclusive agent for a few ‘marquee’ players. And that’s a good thing, in my opinion. We will see if that proves to be a positive development for future professional cricket. Give it time!

    • Gérard, you either clearly choose to mislead or you are not aware of the facts. Either way your comments are not reflective of the realities of WI cricket. However you asked that we give it some time. Hopefully as we give the time you are asking we can pay the 43 million USD we owe India, recover from the 10 million USD for Champions League we did not receive because the team did not qualify plus brace for another possible 40 million USD loss if India does not tour next year and don’t forget the 50 year agreement with CP HELL with little monetary value. How much time do you need again to make sure we are fully bankrupt.

    • It is my understanding that almost 95% the WI players left WIPA but what do I know.

    • Talking about misleading, Dinas? We don’t owe India a red cent as far as I’m concerned. You and I both know (even if only one of us is willing to admit it) that the previous CBA/MOU was a totally lopsided arrangement that was the result of the Board at the time being totally outsmarted by the then WIPA. Balance needed to be restored or else we would have faced the prospect of continuous disputes between players and the Board. I know that we will never agree on that, but that’s ok with me too. Everything has its season, and the former arrangements were perhaps necessary to redress the past imbalance of power between players and a Colonial Board. Its time has now passed though and a new arrangement is called for. As I keep saying, history will be the judge. For me, it’s time now that our team has arrived in Sri Lanka to Rally ’round the West Indies, now and forever!

    • Clearly you read the last CBA and MOU but did not understand the agreement or choose not understand it given the advice you may have given on this matter. The team could not have taken action unless they served a Notice of Dispute. Further the dispute resolution process outlined a manner in which disputes need to be handled hence the reason when the WICB breached we had no choice but to go to Arbitration. Under the agreement you advised the WICB to get rid would have protected them. You are absolutely wrong on this one.

    • You are also wrong about not owing India a red cent but of course you are entitled to your opinion. WICB sign an agreement with India and then the team walked out of the tour before it ended and in your opinion the BCCI has no claim. Of course, it’s your opinion, I just hope that the WICB hire good lawyers.

    • Of course they have a claim, nobody is disputing that, but a claim is not a debt eh. We will see whether the claim will be deemed legitimate in the fullness of time. Neither you nor I is a lawyer, unless bush lawyers count.

    • But, as I said, we will probably never agree on this as on many other issues. That’s life, my friend.

    • Well I believe India has a better claim against WICB than WICB has with Phil Simmons. Time will tell!!!

  15. After the 1-1 Test series draw with England, where WI showed a determination which had been missing in the longer format in recent years, coupled with the recent statement by WICB that Holder would be fully supported in his role as Captain, I had been prematurely optimistic for this upcoming tour against an inexperienced SL side. As Lasana Liburd rightly said, conduct usually suggests you wait till after a matter is investigated before dishing out suspensions, and along with the recent announcement that WI will miss the ICC Champions Trophy, its dark days for a WICB that seems pre-historic in their rationale.

  16. Coaches are at least as important and possibly more so Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard. Some coaches have contracts that ensure no player can earn more.
    Surely the wicb sees the value in Simmons which is why he was hired in the first place.
    Why is he suddenly so unimportant to the team’s results?
    Or is it that the Sri Lanka tour doesn’t really matter? That would be an odd signal to send to the team and the Sri Lankans.
    Or is the WICB making it up as they go along and simply don’t know what they are doing or understand what their role should be for a successful cricket team?

    • Why do you conclude that he is considered unimportant? One of the major problems facing us in West Indies Cricket (and indeed the entire region) is a lack of discipline and professionalism. Surely we cannot continue accepting indiscipline if we hope to get anywhere near the pinnacle of world cricket again. I think Phil Simmons is a great coach and a fantastic person, but his public statements were indisciplined and unprofessional – and he has admitted as much. Do we ignore it and ‘move on’ or does it require some sort of action to ensure it is not repeated? Sometimes tough decisions need to be made if we are serious about excellence.

    • We have to start calling a spade a spade and treat with the issues objectively. We have a tendency though to be lax in our criticism of the Players while being at the other end of the spectrum where the Board is concerned. Admittedly, much of it has been deserved (give a dog a bad name) but too many of us are simply being unfair in the current issue.

    • I didn’t say forget and move on. But the WICB should be professional too.
      I notice excerpts from Simmons’ apology are in the public domain. Who leaked that?
      Did the WICB do the same thing it is accusing Simmons of for its own benefit?
      Investigate Simmons actions and then act. Don’t act before the investigation.
      Investigate the leak of Simmons’ apology.
      And investigate, most of all, the allegation that the selection process of the West Indies cricket team.
      Or is it that only the players and coaches are subject to codes of conduct and bound to behave professionally and the WICB can do as it pleases?
      I note you don’t seem bothered by the allegations that the selection of the cricket team is being inappropriately interfered with.

    • Not that at I’m quarrelling with you eh Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard. The exchange of opinions is good and it helps me understand the thinking of cricket officials.

    • I understand, Lasana Liburd, and I’m cool with the exchange of views. Perhaps you missed my posts which clearly indicated that a proper investigation should also be conducted into the allegations made by Coach Simmons.

    • And of course the Board is not exempt from scrutiny and an obligation to set and maintain disciplined and professional standards of behaviour – in fact, as some have said, they will not possess the moral authority to hold others accountable if they fail to do so.

    • I did miss those. Glad to hear it. Let me add that I mean an independent investigation done by people who are acceptable to both parties.

    • Good. I’m happy with that position Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard ??

    • If we focus on the facts and the principles rather than the personalities or vested interests we are much more likely to get it right.

  17. Well said Lasana. I agree 100% with your comments.

  18. Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard what you have just described is virtually indistinguishable from punishment in sport. So if that is what the WICB had in mind, then I am speechless because that would really suggest the cricket board is well out of touch and probably decades behind customary sport practice for such matters.
    You see, you cannot give an athlete or coach a game back, even if you gave him a match fee. What if you used your suggested industrial relations practises and made Cristiano Ronaldo miss a Champions League final?
    What happens in sport is you allow the player and coach to continue while the investigation is done. And you act after.
    The WICB has already disrupted the team’s preparation by removing the coach from his job.
    If that is not punishment then I think it will do.
    In football, nobody is suspended until the matter is adjudicated. And, even then, a player or coach is allowed to appeal.
    If the player appeals, most times the suspension will not be enforced and he will be allowed to play until his appeal is heard.
    That is what sport considers acceptable industrial relations.

  19. Alvin Corneal wrote an article in yesterday’s Guardian which made reference to breach of protocol by Lloyd and someone else. His question was if breaches of protocol are subject to disciplinary action, why were the previous breaches not treated in like manner? Is it OK to breach protocol if you speak well of the WICB, but not OK if you do not praise them.
    Regardless of when this matter is resolved, there needs to be an enquiry into the Simmons allegations.

    • Do we even know the nature of the charges, if any, that have been laid against Coach Simmons? As usual where the WICB is concerned, there is much talk and consternation based on little fact. I’d rather get the facts first before commenting. But that’s just me.

    • He was suspended. That much is fact. And that is what most people are commenting on.

    • Lasana, there is a huge difference between a disciplinary suspension and a non-punitive suspension on full pay while an investigation is underway.

    • And I agree Bruce, and investigation needs to be done in order to establish if there’s any truth to the allegations.

    • It is quite acceptable industrial relations practice to suspend a person (with full pay and benefits) while an investigation is carried out into an alleged infraction. Such a non-punitive suspension does not constitute a finding of guilt in relation to anything. After the investigation, depending on the facts unearthed, charges may be laid against the employee and a disciplinary hearing may be convened in order to allow him an opportunity to respond to said charges. It is only after the conclusion of such a hearing that appropriate disciplinary action may be considered necessary. Such disciplinary action could range from a Written Warning to a Disciplinary Suspension (without pay) to Termination.

    • Unfortunately, there has been much ventilation of opinion (even by those who know better, or at least ought to) on the mistaken premise that Coach Simmons has been disciplined. This is at best premature.

    • Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard, what you have just described is virtually indistinguishable from punishment in sport. So if that is what the WICB had in mind, then I am speechless because that would really suggest the cricket board is well out of touch and probably decades behind customary sport practice for such matters.
      You see, you cannot give an athlete or coach a game back, even if you gave him a match fee. What if you used your suggested industrial relations practises and made Cristiano Ronaldo miss a Champions League final?
      What happens in sport is you allow the player and coach to continue while the investigation is done. And you act after.
      The WICB has already disrupted the team’s preparation by removing the coach from his job.
      If that is not punishment then I think it will do.
      In football, nobody is suspended until the matter is adjudicated. And, even then, a player or coach is allowed to appeal.
      If the player appeals, most times the suspension will not be enforced and he will be allowed to play until his appeal is heard.
      That is what sport considers acceptable industrial relations.

    • Lasana, we will have to agree to disagree on that where an Official and not a player is concerned.

    • Lasana is quite correct. Pick any major sport and you will find that the players and coaches continue in their roles while the investigation is done. To do otherwise deprives the team of the services of the individuals which is a punishment while they are yet to be found guilty.

      The industrial relations practice Gerard spoke of does not apply in sports. I would be very interested in hearing any example where this was not the case.

    • Interestingly, the Collective Bargaining Agreement of the National Hockey League provides that the league “may suspend the Player pending the League’s formal review and disposition of the matter where the failure to suspend the Player during this period would create a substantial risk of material harm to the legitimate interests and/or reputation of the League.”

    • There are many many instances in sport where non-punitive suspensions are effected pending investigation of an allegation.

    • Gerry, with all due respect can we really compare what Phil did, (and I am not condoning it,) to these examples you raised where violence, sexual assault and the like were involved?
      Are there not rules of decent behavior with which leaders need to conform like telling the truth to the public??
      How then can the President tell such lies to the public about not banning Reds Perreira, Tony Cozier and Mikey Holding from commentary of West Indies Cricket??
      They are all on record as saying that they were banned.
      Yet he tells the public that one cannot see, one not in good health and Mikey does not have time. I am a personal friend of all three and that they have been banned is the truth.
      Should he not be suspended but ( non punitive of course ) while an investigation takes place???
      Or is this not in the best interest of West Indies cricket.
      Tell multiple LIES and this is OK.
      Tell the truth, and you are out of place.
      Answer me also about Alvin Corneal’s points.

    • Bruce, as far as I am concerned we are dealing with a single issue here. Of course there are others to be addressed and they should be dealt with, but let’s not flip flop all over the place. Your argument is starting to resemble your logic in defending the past PP government in the face of massive corruption simply because of your bitterness towards their opponents. Could it be that your obvious personal animosity towards the WICB President is clouding your judgment? My recollection is that he was recently re-elected for another term based on the support of the vast majority of the Territorial Boards. Or is it, like that other political battle, that the losers still cannot accept the will of the majority?

    • Gerard,
      You should be on the dance floor with your beautiful wife. You dance so well around the issues. You focus on those before us, but not on those that caused them.
      An HR consultant and an Independent HR practitioner are poles apart.
      I have not defended the previous government, and people who know me well can tell you my independent position. What I defended at times was the unfair attack by people who blamed the government for things over which the government had no control.
      My personal animosity towards the present WICB President is founded on FACT. And you should know that facts are stubborn things.
      As regards his support of the majority boards, tell me a few things.
      How did he get the Jamaican support???????
      Why was the delegate of St.Vincent in accordance with the Windward Islands Board arrangement replaced by Lockhart Sebastien a Dominican employed by the W.I Board to vote in favor.
      How you get the Guyana vote???? Give Lloyd a big job.
      You are someone who I thought was independent, but your LOVE of the PNM and support of Cameron causes me concern.
      Hope you are not advising on any WICB MATTERS.
      But I do not expect that you are.

    • Bruce, you are right in that facts are a stubborn thing eh. And you have so many of them wrong….Firstly, I am single and so have no beautiful wife to dance with, unlike you (lucky man). Secondly, I have no ‘LOVE’ for the PNM (or any political party, for that matter) but I do have an abiding contempt for corruption and the former government that you so liked to defend was the worst I have ever experienced in that regard. So, please don’t be too concerned about me and my independence just because I don’t agree with you on some issues. After all, you can’t always be right, ent? As for advising the WICB, or any other client that requests my professional services, I would be happy to do so whenever asked, and always to the best of my ability and in accordance with my personal code of ethics and professionalism. I’m sure you would appreciate that.

    • Now leave mih alone and let me go to bed – ah have a full day tomorrow. Good night!

    • Another dance. Stop ducking and answer the questions I asked. Or can you not. You have this tendency to attack with alacrity and gay abandon, but once put on the spot you go to sleep.
      That is what I love about consultants. Never face the real world. Like lawyers work for whoever pays. Me? I cannot do that. I tell you like it is. You do not like it? As Beenhaker used to say have a nice day and FO.

    • Bruce, why do you feel that I have to answer any of your dotish questions rather than stay on topic? And don’t bother trying to bait me with snide barbs against consultants eh, because in our case we are usually called in when the HR ‘experts’ in the ‘real world’ have made a mess of things (I remember one funny story when a big HR boss at a regional financial institution recruited a very senior HR Executive from abroad who turned out to be a total fraud – only discovered by one of those external HR consultants). Good thing eh, or even more egg would have been on many faces. Luckily for me I have had the opportunity to work both inside and outside of your ‘real world’ and have some really good stories from both sides of the fence.

    • And, finally, Bruce, as your other good pardna used to say…I might answer all those questions you asked eh…but not tonight! Or, if you really need them answered tonight, ask yuh mudder! Lol and good night?

    • Nice duck again. Stay under the cover and out of trouble. But rest assured we will get you friend.

    • As Tonto said to the Lone Ranger, “Who ‘we’, paleface?”

    • Bruce is he getting personal now? Par for the course. I see you mentioned his love of the PNM…seems he loves all sides…thats how he has managed to talk so much crap. I guess he has to eat anyhow.

    • Just to put the record straight, it was NOT the HR boss that hired that person, it was done by the HR committee of the Holding Co. board. It was also no brilliant HR consultant who uncovered the fraud, but the system to check the credentials of such people that were instituted by the H.R. Boss.
      Once again your facts are as straight as a corkscrew. And we agree on one thing, ALL questions you cannot answer on EVERY subject are dotish. At least you are consistent in that.

    • Hahaha…seems like ah mash yuh corn. Doh worry, all ah we does screw up eh. Btw, there are millions of questions that I can’t answer eh.

    • Gerard – you quoted examples from amateur sports and the others were accused of committing serious criminal acts. None of these are even close to the example we are dealing with here unless you are equating being sought by the police for assault with Simmons’ breach of protocol.

      Interestingly, in your last example, the team did not suspend the player from training camp despite being a subject of a criminal investigation. Perhaps you missed that part?

      And in regards to your NHL example, that is clearly written with regards to players committing acts that threaten the league as a commercial enterprise. I doubt speaking out of turn would qualify on that basis.

    • Kendall, I was merely pointing out that such non-punitive suspensions do in fact occur in sports, especially where the team, league or the game itself may have been brought into disrepute. A simple google search threw up several instances, so I gave you a sample as requested.

    • Gerry, I have no corns for you to mash so do not worry yourself.
      My conscience is clear and my heart is pure. I answer any question to the best of my knowledge and given the info that I have. I do not duck and run.

    • It wasn’t a relevant sample Gerard Emile Zatopek Pinard. Surely you can see that Simmons absence from the team is a punishment for the coach and the players. It cannot be interpreted any other way.

    • Lasana, the sample was just that, a sample. The point is that non-punitive suspensions are indeed quite commonplace in sports as elsewhere. I would imagine that the duration of the suspension would determine whether it could really be deemed to be punitive or not. I also imagine that the Board would have weighed the potential damage of having the Coach continue to operate despite his unfortunate comments versus the potential of his suspension being deemed to be punitive in nature. A tough call, to be sure.

    • And we also ought to consider the impact of the public comments on the reputation and character of the Selectors who were accused of being influenced by external factors. And then there are the players who were selected, who might well be pondering whether they were chosen on merit based on the allegations. It’s not all about one man by any means.

    • Bruce, you still trying to get me to join you in a trolling exercise? I am dealing with the subject matter of the thread and have neither the time nor the inclination to join you on a frolic of your own – if you consider that ducking and running, that’s cool with me. But I am the only one who dictates my priorities these days, whether anybody else likes it or not.

    • So if I put a subject matter as ” Can anyone tell me why
      THE PRESIDENT OF THE WICB CONTINUES TO BE A STRANGER TO THE TRUTH IN HIS COTTAGE MEETINGS”
      You might have the time or the inclination to discuss? Or will your priorities, that only you set not allow you to do so.
      Just asking.

    • Bruce, that would be what we HR folks call a leading question. You know, like if I were to ask you whether you still beat your lovely wife. The fact that you continue to make allegations of all kinds against the President does not by itself lend any credence to same. If you recall, all sorts of allegations were also made about your own performance and conduct as CEO of the Board, which did not mean that such allegations were credible or true. Ent?

    • Remember, “he who alleges must prove”.

    • Well Cozier, Holding and Perreira all lie so it remains allegations.
      As for allegations against me? Let them prove it. I have lots of proof about many of them. Go back and read my resignation.

    • And by the way leave my wife out of your nasty comments. Throwing that on this site is to set people thinking. And a disgrace. Did not think you would do something like that when you know better. Have a nice day.

    • That’s my point, Bruce. Allegations are just that, allegations. You continue to make what I consider to be scandalous allegations of your own against Dave Cameron without offering a shred of proof in support of same. But that’s between you, him and the admins of this group.

    • Bruce, you clearly missed my point. The classic example quoted of a leading question is “do you still beat your wife?” Surely you know this, so please don’t think that it was directed against you personally – if you did, I apologize unreservedly.

  20. Gerry I hope that the WICB will do the right thing and allow due process in this matter and more importantly an independent committee to investigate the serious allegations made by Phil. I am not holding my breath but my experience is the Board will appoint themselves or people close to them. I hope this time it is different.

  21. Simmons has done the right thing by apologizing for his intemperate remarks. Hopefully, the Board will respond leniently and investigate whether there was any basis for his concerns.

  22. I am not sure they are “anti-Trini” as much as they are egotistical, retaliatory, and possibly dictatorial.

  23. Well Simmons has today apologised for making, what he calls, a ”schoolboy error” in speaking out against selection policy. Seems that unless he said he made such an ”error”, he would have been sacked by WICB

  24. The WICB is canny with their politics. By selecting Jason Mohammed and Samuel Badree,re-calling Ravi and Narine and keeping Bravo and Pollard for T20’s, they making it hard to imply there is an anti-trini agenda in place

  25. OMG we need to stand up for SIMMO with the stand he has taken but like he had a premature ejaculation with that stan alluh hear that apology is the worst need some VIAGRA SIMMO like you are unable to maintain the STAND for long what ah shame have no problem with the apology if you mis-spoke in breach of protocol but to berate your self so its like throwing your self to the wolves that is not a true description of yourself so now we all wonder who or what made you choose those words

  26. What is also apparent is the shameless discrimination against Trinidadians,even during the glory days. It is inconceivable that Eldine Baptiste played more Test matches than Tony Gray. Yet Baptiste played ten test matches and Gray only played five. Brian Lara should have been playing since 1989, but he was constantly beaten to it(Viv Richards’ explanation) by Keith Atherton, Carlisle Best,players of grossly inferior talents. Ian Bishop was a fast bowling phenomenon when legends were retiring so he had no problem. The logistics and bureaucracy of going it alone are ginormous and quite frankly, very intimidating. But I think it is an avenue worth taking a serious look at, at the very least. Trinidad as seen by the regional tournaments(do not mention the four day, because it is totally unacceptable that the test team is chosen in part by a six match per team long tournament where most top players cannot play in because of WI or test commitments) is producing players. The rest of islands with the exception of Barbados are not. The quality of many of the Bajan players is yet to be determined also. The price of oil realistically can’t stay down forever. We are the only team that can put in place a proper cricketing structure, a team, an academy and stadiums.

  27. This no surprise. Wicb boards,especially boards headed by Jamaicans tend to be the most autocratic, disrespectful and insecure administrations. Pat Rousseau did the same thing to Brian Lara and Malcolm Marshall in 1999 vs Australia. The same thing with the world cup in the West Indies. Besides that, wicb boards have always wanted yes men as skippers. Desmond Haynes was to be captain after Viv retired, not only because of seniority but because viv himself was grooming him to be captain.Yet when the ‘Master Blaster retired, Ritchie Richardson was skipper. WE ENT RECOVER FROM THAT YET. As history shows, whatever cracks, or crevices there were were covered for three and a half years until Australia reached our shores in April/May of 1995 and we lost ad it would have been much worse than 2-1 if it wasn’t for the pitch(if that is what it could be called) at QPO. Also, Dave Cameron was on the marketing board during the time when the Patterson report was published and was a vocal critic of its implementation.

    • Dopey, there’s probably some merit in what you say but it’s all so awfully NEGATIVE. Criticism is most useful, sir, when it seeks to be constructive.
      And just for the record, the West Indies have not recovered politically either from Eric Williams’ fancy one=from-ten-leaves-nought maths. Is that what you really want for the cricket?

  28. A bunch of self serving, pompous, incompetent fools.

  29. Some of the comments here are empty, they are childish, they are absurd, they are frivolous and vacuous. I am not staying here to continue this foolish debate. I am leaving now. I am getting out of here. Lol

  30. The IPL and countries where cricket has re-captured record audiences, all want Bravo, Pollard, Narine, Gayle and Russell because they are winners and crowd favourites; our selectors consider them hindrances. These players should be the first five to be selected on any WI Team if we truly want to “rise” again. Their popularity obviously irks the selectors. These five have gone their way and are laughing all the way to fame and fortune. Kudos to them – they are the only players who bring glory and recognition to the West Indies but can’t even “make our pwn team”.

  31. I am totally satisfied that the West Indies cricket board hates cricket but loves money bad . That board is to disrespectful to players and coaches once they remain there West Indies cricket will never rise again.

  32. WICB continues to be such a disappointment and failure I often wonder if their mission is to destroy

  33. Back to the colonial days when a white foreigner calling the shots for WI cricket

  34. DEM wicb PPL doh kno wen deh ‘ve ar gud ting an too bias ole’fashion tinkin car handle de truth,, seen i

  35. What gives the board to play with the lives of our players. Bravo and Pollard are two of the most gifted cricketers in the world who attract the biggest following in the the most lucrative fan base in cricket, ‘India’ and yet we who are financially bankrupt continue to exclude them for egotistical reasons Mr. Cameron it is time for you to step down and allow someone who can put aside ego be the President, all u r is ‘ President’ of ur appointed henchmen .This reeks of a Fifa styled feifdom. U Sir are no longer relevant.

  36. I am disgusted with Cameron and the Board and very disappointed in Walsh. Kudos to Lloyd, Gayle and Simmons for standing up for West Indies cricket. It seems as though Cameron and his stooges are bent on keeping WI cricket in the doldrums. Maybe it’s more profitable for them not to present the best team

  37. This certainly is a “wow” moment

  38. Lasana but why would a head coach not be able to select the players he thinks/knows/has confidence in on his squad. Football coaches do it, basketball coaches, volleyball coaches etc. Why does Phil Simmons have to play with the hand he is dealt?

    • That is one of the things about cricket that makes me think it is stuck in the dark ages.
      Football used to have a selection committee. That was abolished back in the 1960s or early 1970s.
      They should have a scouting network in place. But the ultimate decision should be the coach’s. It is his neck on the line. Courtney Walsh won’t get sacked if West Indies are crap in Sri Lanka. But Simmons could have lost his job.

    • Exactly, Stephen Hart would lose his job if the Soca Warriors don’t perform. I can’t understand why cricket is this way. Makes no sense. Let the coach pick his squad and lose his neck if he pick a bad hand. No wonder Desmond Haynes left (or pushed out) when IMO he still had a lot more to offer. And Lara and Sarwan and… I wonder what Ken Gordon thinks?

    • So imagine making Terry Fenwick a selector for Stephen Hart’s team when Fenwick wants the job himself.
      Not trying to suggest anything about Fenwick here. Just to point out how ludicrous that situation is.

    • The state West Indies cricket is in only a masochist would want that job.

  39. I’ve seen it happen in local football before. After a while, people get so frustrated with Jack Warner’s antics at the helm that they start viewing the team as Warner FC. And then attendances drop from about 18,000 to about 4,000.
    It is already happening in cricket. And it is a long road back from there.

  40. In Simmons case this is hitting close to home too. His nephew refuse to play for West Indies

  41. Well, they went after Chris Gayle too. And the Jamaican PM immediately convened a Caricom meeting to deal with it.
    The “sport loving” T&T governments are always much less likely to stand up for their athletes.

  42. Let us take a look at the composition of the West Indies board, what influence can we say we have when our representative sits among those who seek, at all cost to re elect someone like Dave Cameron. The man has proven himself to be a dictator in the Bravo incident, yet he is back as President, so the problem with the WI Board is DEEP ROOTED, so the entire Board needs to be replaced, not forgetting his WIPA President sidekick, he also has to go. Their status and reputation is equal to that of FIFA….CORRUPT….now we have another case of interference by those who have no authority to dictate to the selection committee who gets selected.OUR CRICKET IS DEAD, THE KILLER??? …THE BOARD.

  43. if TT pulls out there is no west indies… Bassrath is continuing to destroy our players, he is part of the problem

  44. plenty snakes in that nest… can’t be trusted.. trinis are being targeted

  45. But I think we’re far away from that scenario tho…i dont think there’s anyone ready to bite that bullet.

  46. Yea, but there is room for creativity there..once they start winning it opens options.

  47. Exactly Richard Zen O’Brien the TTCB would have to become the highest bidder to ensure they stay and play for TnT

  48. Nicole I think given a comparative and respectable contract they would choose to represent country. Plus the international T20 schedule doesn’t always clash with the IPL. But what you are saying is a cause for concern, however the WICB isn’t offering me much hope.

  49. The problem with that Richard Zen O’Brien is that our world beaters can be sold to the highest bidder.

  50. Time for Trinidad to go out on its own, Forget West Indies Cricket.

    • This is exactly what the rest of the Cricketing world (India dominated ICC) wants. None of the West Indian Islands can make it alone on any basis in International Cricket. The decline of W.I Cricket was never an accident nor entirely the bumbling of WICB. It was a well thought out plan by devious minds at the International Administrative level, to ensure that these little Caribbean Islands never again dominate at International Level. The first salvo was the closing of the doors to English County and League Cricket for budding West Indian talent, where all our great players of the past honed their skills, acquired a disciplined approach totally absent in our Cricket and enabled them to quickly grasp all the attributes of true professionalism. As this plan began to take shape less and less international playing time a key area of any sportsman’s development, was denied our young players. In the meantime the WICB ran true to form and did nothing of substance to replace the English Finishing School for our young talent. Of course the formulators of the plot had already done their homework on the WICB and kept tightening the screws to the point that less and less money went into its coffers. What we have been witnessing over recent years, is a fight back of sorts led by WIPA when Ramnarine was at its helm, the brave action of the players in India and now Phil Simmons’s stance. In this regard all those who have risked taking a stand are in desperate need of our support and most of all our assistance, for it is going to be a fight to the finish, as the likes of Cameron and those before him, as well those aspiring to the status quo, are not going to have a sudden attack of CONSCIENCE and do the right thing. Inevitably the OLD ORDER will be swept away by the NEW ORDER.

  51. This is a blatant attack on trinidadians they want us to kiss asses but no way

  52. We should seriously entertain the conversation about going it alone. The WICB accounts to no one so i can’t see how West Indies cricket could survive. We have produced world beaters, let’s develop more of them.

  53. The WICB seems intent on mashing up WIndies cricket, smh

  54. Wavel Hinds is the biggest sellout. As president of WIPA he has destroyed all credibility that the institution had. After compromising the integrity of WIPA with dave cameron they both look like che-che man

  55. Simmons behave like a likkle boy throwing a temper tantrum.. “I didnt get my country men on the team, so I will babble bullshit like a baby.
    How can he prove that Walsh Browne and Baptiste were influenced by anyone but their own conscience?
    Also clearly the author of this unbalanced diatribe knows nothing about ANATOMY

  56. After seeing regional boards reelect Dave Cameron is anybody truly surprised by this?

  57. Well, after the India debacle I can hazzard a good guess as to who the outside influence are

  58. Daiz not just backstabbing nuh Lasana, daiz stabbing while pelting dog jook and singing Rally.

  59. Seems like the credibility of the WICB and Cameron can get no worse. I wonder if we have arrived at the juncture where Trinidad and Tobago should evaluate going it alone on the international cricket stage. If not now, then when??

  60. One word for WI cricket,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,(Shambles) Which has been going on for a number of years now.

  61. I want dem gone I fed up of this issues continually happening, I know you got to have both sides of the story but everyone cannot be worn can they

  62. Need to send in President Obama and Pope Francis to fix the WICB.

  63. “There are no winners in West Indian cricket anymore; just losers.” The saddest, truest words ever spoken.

  64. I know reelecting Cameron would be a disaster. He has no love of the game and had absolutely no qualms of destroying the game.

  65. Simmons was always going to be refreshingly outspoken, he knows he can walk into a job with a English County side should it be needed, probably on better pay aswell, so he had no fear when it came to addressing issues with WICB publically

  66. The terminal decline of West Indies Cricket continues, radical overhaul of the WICB is clearly needed, but how to get there is the question.

    • I’ve seen this happen with T&T football under Jack Warner. Fans get increasingly frustrated and eventually the national team more as Jack Warner FC than their representatives. And then they stop going to games in their thousands.
      It is a long road back from there.

  67. And again the players are left in the cold without even a union to represent them.
    And we must again wonder how we got here and how we can reclaim the West Indies team.

    • Yea if there was any doubt before that WIPA is in bed with WICB this proves it. Not a word from Wavell Hinds when Ramdin was sacked, Chanderpaul was dropped or the Simmons issue although technically WIPA don’t represent coaches.

      All the great work Dinanath Ramnarine did as WIPA head has been torn apart by Hinds.

  68. Strictly speaking Simmo should not have gone public but there comes a stage when one is put in a situation where one has to conclude that enough is enough and is prepared to pay the ultimate price. In this case his job.

    • Ye that is the key point. Not need for people to get technical and try suggest he should have followed company protocol and not say nothing.

      A lot people have been suspicious that Bravo & Pollard have been victimized – WICB has been fooling no one. So if Simmons can speak out only solidifies the belief

  69. The man is obviously a patriot and wants what’s best for West Indies cricket. He sounds idealistic. Egos are a big part of the problem. I could hear Cameron saying that Bravo and Pollard will only get back in over my dead body especially after what happened in India. Baptiste and Walsh have no testicular fortitude.

  70. A lot of sport administrators would serve their sports better as fans.

  71. First of all, the people entrusted with governing cricket have to want a return to prominence for West Indies cricket. I haven’t seen much to suggest that they do.

    • But, Lasana, you have put your finger on it right there, apparently serendipitously. You talked about “governing cricket.” Was that deliberate or a mere Freudian slip?

  72. Not a big sports fan but the management of west indies cricket on the whole leaves a sour taste. What would it take to develop cricket to help return it to its former glory days. And bring in new, young fans. Sports used to be a source of national pride and unity. Is it management, sponsorship, lack of discipline or a combination of the three.

  73. As the small-minded Caribbean man continues on their paths of self, it is time for T&T to make some hard decisions. For too many years the trinbagonian has been at the whim and fancy of these egomaniacs. Let the WICB continue along with their Jambaj team, and let T&T move on alone. It is time….

    • T & T couldn’t make it alone. Years ago when Ganga was captain, you would’ve had a chance. But not now. If you have three genuine Test players, you have a lot. Plus your top players are all about self.

  74. Lasana, who’s the third selector?