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WICB stumped! – Sarwan, Simmons win against board

WICB stumped! – Sarwan, Simmons win against board Ramnaresh Sarwan. (FP)

Fri, September 14, 2012 - 12:03 AM

Out-of-favour West Indies batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan has won his case against the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) over comments made about his fitness and has been awarded US$161 000 (BDS$322 000) in damages.

The matter was heard in arbitration.

Sarwan, who has not played for West Indies since June last year, had lodged the appeal, in conjunction with the West Indies Players' Association (WIPA), against the WICB in March 2011 for unfairly questioning in public his fitness and attitude.

This, he said, effectively cost him not only a central contract for the 2010-11 season but also damaged his “reputation as a professional cricketer” and “sullied his career as an international cricketer”.

Accepting Sarwan’s claim that he had suffered “loss and damage”, the arbitrator, Seenath Jairam, concluded that the batsman had been “denigrated” because the selection processes of the WICB were not transparent and the board had committed various breaches of their Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the player.

The WICB called the verdict a “highly flawed ruling by the arbitrator”.

A release issued on the board’s Facebook page stated it was treating the matter as “closed”.

Earlier this summer, Sarwan, who had a successful county season with Leicestershire even as West Indies were being beaten on their England tour, said he had been “mentally broken down by certain individuals”, while blaming the coaching set-up for his non-selection.

In another setback to the WICB, opening batsman Lendl Simmons was awarded US$117 203 (BDS$234 406) in damages through arbitration in a case the player had filed against the board.

Simmons, who is part of West Indies squad for the World Twenty20, had sought WIPA’s help last year after he was rendered jobless despite having a valid contract with WICB between October 1, 2009 and September 30, 2010.

After Simmons missed the ODI series against Zimbabwe (March 2010), World Twenty20 (April 2010), West Indies ‘A’ against Zimbabwe (May 2010) and Bangladesh (May-June 2010), South Africa series (June-July 2010) and West Indies ‘A’ tour of England and Ireland, WIPA checked with the WICB if Simmons was facing any disciplinary issues. WICB said that was not the case.

However, Clyde Butts, the West Indies chairman of selectors, told the Caribbean Media Corporation that Simmons had some “issues” other than those related to performance.

WIPA alleged that this had served Simmons badly as it had impacted his livelihood, “his professional reputation and has hampered his ability to procure and exploit other commercial and business ventures and future employment”. (Cricinfo)

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