Cricket Board (T&TCB) president, Azim Bassarath is hoping that the decision to sack Denesh Ramdin as West Indies Test captain is not part of a plan to target Trinidadian players.
Ramdin is the third T&T player to be ejected from a leadership position by the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) within recent times. Over the weekend Merissa Aguilliera, the long serving women’s wicket keeper batsman, who has been at the helm of the team since 2009, was also moved while Dwayne Bravo, who led the One-day team to India last year, has also been replaced.
Bassarath, the outspoken WICB director said he was not party to the West Indies Cricket Board directors’ teleconference last Wednesday when the decision to remove Ramdin was ratified.
Ramdin was on Friday axed after just 15 months in charge and replaced by one-day skipper Jason Holder, a recommendation from selectors which the WICB said had been “endorsed unanimously” by directors during the teleconference.
Bassarath said he had not attended the meeting because of his commitments in today’s general elections here.
He believes Ramdin should have been allowed to lead the squad to Sri Lanka starting next month, so the selectors could have further assess his performance.
“I think we should have given him another opportunity to tour Sri Lanka as captain and then look at his performance if the selectors had a problem,” Bassarath was quoted as saying in a CMC report.
“What is shocking to me is that earlier this year, Denesh led the team against England and we came away with a credible draw. “Against Australia we lost 2-0 but I didn’t think he performed that badly with the bat that he deserved being dropped. I am disappointed that the selectors came up with that recommendation. Very, very disappointed.” The 30-year-old Ramdin, who took over from Darren Sammy as Test captain in May last year, led West Indies in 13 Tests – winning four, losing seven and drawing two.
During that time, he managed 472 runs at an average of 22, and a highest score of 57.
Bassarath said he hoped Trinidadian players were not being specifically targeted because of their alleged role in last year’s controversial abandoned tour of India.
“I am hoping the (WICB) president (Dave Cameron) is not part of this move to spite and victimise Trinidad and Tobago players because of what transpired in India where Dwayne Bravo was captain and it is alleged that some of the Trinis were leading the charge,” Bassarath said. “I hope it also does not have anything to do with Baldath Mahabir and the TTCB not supporting Cameron for the presidency of the WICB. I would hate to think it has reached that level where the TTCB, which was considered the best territorial board in the Caribbean—and I still think we are—that we are treated in this manner.”
He added: “I would not sit down idly by as a WICB director and allow any victimisation and vindictiveness creep into West Indies cricket.”
Bravo was last December sacked as one-day captain and replaced by Holder, and also dropped from the one-day squad for South Africa and the subsequent World Cup.
Fellow Trinidadian Kieron Pollard was also axed from the one-day squad.