West Indies fast bowling great Sir Andy Roberts insists it was a mistake for the team to embark on the current tour of England, without tangible compensation, due to the high risk taken by the players.
The West Indies and England will return to international cricket next month, with a three-Test match series behind closed doors. With the spread of the coronavirus continuing to be a serious concern in the UK, for safety reasons, the players and everyone associated with the series will be kept in what has been described as a biosecure bubble for seven weeks.
With the United Kingdom (UK) being one of the hardest-hit countries and some 41,128 deaths already reported, they are, however, still some risk in travelling for the tour. As such, West Indies players were given the option of not accepting the invitation, with Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer and Keemo Paul all deciding to opt-out due to safety concerns. As is customary it is the host team that will be entitled to the revenue from the series, with the decision by the West Indies expected to save the England and Wales Cricket Board £120 million in reimbursements to Sky Sports.
Due to the exceptional nature of the circumstances, Roberts believes the Caribbean team should have secured better compensation.
“I don’t have a problem with them negotiating to go to England, but what I have a problem with is talk that the West Indies will not benefit from the tour financially,” Roberts told the Mason and Guest radio programme.
“I think that is a mistake because the chances that we are going to take, I don’t think you have many more countries that would be willing to take such a chance,” he added.
“If they are to benefit financially then I don’t have a problem but if they are not going to benefit from it then I have a problem, why take the risk and sacrifice the guys.” (www.sportsmax.tv)