Former West Indies pacer Kenneth Benjamin has added his voice to the ongoing discussion surrounding the non-selection of regional and international cricketers, Keiran Pollard and Dwayne Bravo, for next month’s ODI series against Sir Lanka.
Benjamin, who played 26 One Day International’s for the Caribbean side, believes that once the two players are eligible for selection that the coach should be given the benefit of the doubt where their selection is concerned.
“If Pollard and Bravo should not be selected there should be a memo passed onto the selectors saying these guys are not eligible, you can’t leave it open and then you have that kind of rift between selectors and coaches so obviously there is a problem. If you ask any head coach around the world, they hardly vote these days,” he said.
“Most of the selectors understand that the coach is the one in charge and they normally lean towards him so for me, if Phil Simmons want those two gentlemen and once they are eligible for selection then they should be selected,” he added.
Head coach Phil Simmons was suspended this week for comments he made, suggesting there were “outside interference” in the selection of the ODI squad for the Sri Lanka tour.
The coach’s comments came following the non-selection of both Pollard and Bravo.
But according to Benjamin, interference in the selection of teams is nothing new as one former selector, Clyde Butts, had also pointed to a similar practice.
“This thing still happens in West Indies cricket and that is why we are having these problems now because my thing is, if the board has said let’s finish with them (Bravo and Pollard) then that would have been fine but that should be made clear but once you leave a loophole and the coach wants the players he should get them and quite frankly, I am disappointed in the other three selectors,” he said.
The WICB, on Tuesday, named both the ODI and T20 squads for next month’s tour.