As controversy continues to embroil West Indies cricket with the latest saga concerning the suspension of coach Phil Simmons, news coming to hand is that the three selectors who did not support the return of Dwayne Bravo and Keiron Pollard did not want to be embarrassed by supporting their return because of the reason they were dropped in the first place.
Simmons now faces a WICB-appointed human resources committee because of the comments he made concerning the continued snubbing of Bravo and Pollard. As the West Indies team arrived in Sri Lanka on Thursday, Simmons was not there as Eldine Baptiste, one of the selectors who did not support the players return, was with the team as coach.
A West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) official explained to Guardian Media that the selectors Baptiste, Courtney Walsh and Courtney Browne were concerned about selecting the two players after the reasons they were dropped in the first place.
According to the official: “Back in January the two players were dropped for the tour of South Africa because they were both not showing the type of numbers in terms of their performances that warranted a place on the team.”
At the end on Bravo’s last limited over match against India in October last year his batting average was 25.36.
He has 2,968 runs, while his bowling is more impressive 29.51 with an economy rate of 5.41. He has 199 wickets at present.
Meanwhile, his compatriot Pollard who also was a member of the team that walked-off the tour in India, is averaging 25.20 runs per innings. He scored 2,042 runs and his best score is 119. The lanky part-time bowler is averaging is 38.11 runs per wicket. He has 44 wickets.
“The three selectors showed concerns when it came to selecting them now for the one day series in Sri Lanka when they did not plan any 50 overs cricket in between that time and now to improve on their performances.
“The guys, from what I understand, did not want to look like fools by bringing the players back without anything to show for their change of hearts. At the end of the day the selectors were safe guarding their reputations. If these guys were dropped for less than satisfactory performances on the field in the first instance, then they did not have the opportunity to show an improvement if they did not have any 50 overs cricket from that point to now.”
The official reasoned: “Both men have been selected in the T20 team because their performances here was never in question.
“They continue to be world beaters in this format and hence they are on the T20 team for the matches in Sri Lanka.”
Bravo led the West Indies team during the aborted tour of India last October when the players had a dispute with the WICB over a payment structure.
Since then he is yet to play 50 overs cricket for the West Indies. Both he and Pollard were overlooked for the South African tour and the World Cup that followed.