Red Force coach hits CWI selectors for poor communication

Red Force skipper Darren Bravo, left, with Leeward Islands Hurricanes captain Alzarri Joseph as they hold the CG United Super50 trophy prior to the final earlier this month. PHOTO COURTESY CRICKET WEST INDIES  -
Red Force skipper Darren Bravo, left, with Leeward Islands Hurricanes captain Alzarri Joseph as they hold the CG United Super50 trophy prior to the final earlier this month. PHOTO COURTESY CRICKET WEST INDIES -

TT RED Force coach and lead selector David Furlonge said the line of communication between Cricket West Indies (CWI) and territorial boards is poor, as players are often left in the dark on why they are not considered for the West Indies team.

CWI chief selector Desmond Haynes illustrated such on Monday, during an online media conference, when he said that he owed former ODI vice captain Rovman Powell a call to explain his non-selection for the upcoming One-Day International series against England, bowling off on December 3 in Antigua. He also failed to explain why TT left-arm orthodox Akeal Hosein was omitted, saying he "was not too sure about the Hosein situation."

Red Force skipper Darren Bravo, 34, was also surprisingly overlooked. Bravo was the leading run scorer with 416 runs in the CG United Super50 tournament which ended on November 11. His contributions were valuable as it led Red Force to the Super50 title.

However, Haynes said that the board is building towards the 2027 ICC World Cup and has decided to focus on younger players.

However, just six months ago, at another Zoom conference, Haynes seemingly took a different stance. He said, “We do not have the depth of players to rule out anybody for selection. We really cannot afford to sideline anyone.

“We are interested in selecting the best team. We appreciate the fact of where we are standing in world cricket, and we want to improve that. We want to pick the best players who are committed and can play the roles for us to get from the bottom of the pack.”

But on Monday, Haynes urged territorial boards to select more youthful lineups. He said, "I think it is up to the territories to show us the talent we have in the region. We should expose (players from an earlier age). It is not right for them to be playing for the (West Indies) under-19s and doing well and not getting the opportunity to play for their franchise teams."

With Bravo deemed too old by selectors, the questions arises: what is the cut off age for selection? Kjorn Ottley, 33, who is ten months younger than Bravo, was picked for the England series.

Speaking about Bravo's non-selection, Furlonge said, "I was disappointed, but I was not very surprised, knowing the trend of the selectors...I was hoping there would have been a change in the thinking. If you not going with Bravo again, come out and have a conversation with Bravo."

The Red Force coach said there was no communication before the Super50 tournament between the TTCB and the CWI discussing that there should be a focus on younger players.

"They have never communicated with us...that Darren Bravo cannot play for West Indies again. I don't think he (Haynes) has even told Darren that. I think he is just looking for excuses for the non-selection of Bravo."

He added, "I am all for young players, but you can't include a player because of age. We can't say let's pick him because he is 20 – what about his performance? They have to perform."

Furlonge disagrees with the need to play young players now with the 2027 World Cup in mind. He said the best players should be chosen, despite age, so West Indies will win more series to earn points and improve their world rankings to qualify directly for the 2027 World Cup.

Furlonge said CWI selectors need to have open communication with players. "Plenty lack of communication, players come to you all the time and say, 'I don't know why I have been dropped from West Indies. What did I do wrong?'"

Furlonge said selectors at territorial boards would naturally focus on winning a tournament.

"It is a regional tournament for regional supremacy. I think any selector put forward by a (territorial) board to select teams will pick the best available team to win the competition."

Furlonge added, "(If) Haynes wants development, why not have a development tournament, an Under-23 tournament or Under-25 tournament. Why not have something like that?"


"Red Force coach hits CWI selectors for poor communication"

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