By Neto Baptiste
The CEO of the Leeward Islands Cricket Board (LICB), Peter Abraham, has revealed that the body is contemplating how it will address what he has labelled “concerns” over the method employed in the selection of the now 60 players currently attending the Cricket West Indies (CWI) Rising Stars Under-19 High Performance Camp here in Antigua.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, Abraham said that news that four additional players from Guyana had been added to the original 56 selected for the camp has further ignited discussions at the board level.
“I can tell you that the board has been very active over the last week or two and as you may be aware, the information that came out this morning [of more players being added to the camp] just kind of spurred the discussion as well, so the board will make a determination. We will, at the appropriate time, tell the media if we choose, but we will be acting on this matter through the right channels like we normally do,” he said.
Since the announcement of the training squad last week by CWI, questions have been raised regarding the method used to select players for the camp.
Abraham indicated that the selections were made by CWI and that the LICB board had no hand in choosing which players from the Leewards were included. He also sought to address concerns over the method used in selecting the sub-regional players.
“When these players get selected to the Leeward Islands team, they are Leeward Islands players, so I see them as Leeward Islands players and not the country they come from. So, what I am seeing now is that we have seven Leeward Islands players in the training camp,” he said.
“The under-17 team that played for the Leewards in 2019 was made up of mostly Nevisians and Antiguans with a person from St Maarten, a person from Montserrat and so forth, so if I go back, the under-17 team that was selected for the Leewards in 2019 was predominantly Nevisians and Antiguans. However, I don’t see them as a Leeward Islands having seven talented persons in this tournament,” he added.
The St Kitts-based CEO also sought to debunk reports that coach of the Leeward Islands senior team, Stuart Williams, had a hand in the selection of the Leeward Islands contingent.
“Stuart Williams is the head coach of the Leeward Islands Hurricanes. Stuart Williams was not involved in the selection of any players to the West Indies setup. The only thing Stuart Williams would have done was, after players were selected, Cricket West Indies asked him to join the players to the training sessions to keep fresh and ready for when they were coming to the trials,” Abraham said.
According to a CWI press release, the camp has been designed to help lift the players to the next level of physical and mental skills development, as they prepare for the 2022 ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup to be played in the West Indies in January and February next year.