KIERON Pollard’s fans around the world might not be seeing their favourite cricketer hitting sixes in their domestic T20 leagues, as he has been appointed captain of the West Indies T20 and one-day international (ODI) teams.
Pollard is likely to miss out on several T20 franchise contracts which might conflict with the scheduling of West Indies matches. With the riches of franchise T20 cricket now secondary to the Windies skipper, maroon will take precedence over the various T20 leagues.
And while he said it was not a difficult decision to make, it was one he has “not taken lightly.”
Pollard was announced as West Indies white ball captain, on Monday morning, at a Cricket West Indies (CWI) press conference, at the Hilton Trinidad, Port of Spain.
He replaces Barbadians Jason Holder (ODI) and Carlos Brathwaite (T20).
Pollard is also the captain of the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR), who have played and won three games thus far in the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) T20 tournament.
A player in high demand, especially in the T20 format, he has represented teams including the Cape Cobras, Melbourne Renegades, Mumbai Indians, among others. He has played in leagues such as the Global T20 League (Canada), Bangladesh Premier League, Pakistan Super League, Ram Slam T20 Challenge (South Africa), Indian Premier League and the Big Bash League (Australia).
He believes the accepting captaincy came at the right time and is grateful for the opportunity to help young players in the Caribbean.
Asked about the possible financial setbacks, as he will now be giving up millions of dollars in terms of franchise cricket earnings, since many of these leagues clash with Windies cricket, Pollard said, “I have sat down with my wife, close friends, family and it is something that we decided: ‘Okay we are going to give it a shot,’ because at the end of the day we plan as individuals but when we sit down and we plan certain things, there is a man or somebody up above who is smiling at us because He is the one who actually has plans. Again, it was not that difficult, it was just conversations, and when you decide to do something you stick to it and you go wholeheartedly, and that is what I intend to do.”
CWI president Ricky Skerritt said Pollard and other West Indies players will be able to play in the Indian Premier League and the Caribbean Premier League, as they’ve created a window for them not to clash with West Indies duty.
Skerritt said, “We at Cricket West Indies want Kieron and others to play in world leagues. We want them to travel the world.
“The IPL window is completely blocked off, so that Kieron and others can go to the IPL. You would have heard that for the first time the CPL this year is completely blocked off by Cricket West Indies…in some cases they may have to make some sacrifices, but they won’t have to sacrifice for CPL and they won’t have to sacrifice for IPL.”
Skerrit believes playing in T20 leagues abroad will benefit the West Indies as players gain knowledge of local conditions which could help them and their teammates on West Indies tours.