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Hunte: WICB failed to meet challenge


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West Indies Cricket Board president Julian Hunte admitted the organisation failed to prepare for the future during the glory days of Caribbean cricket.Hunte, a long-standing board member, who succeeded Trinidadian businessman Ken Gordon, lamented that the dominance of West Indies cricket ended 15 years ago. “The challenge to West Indian dominance was met with the stark realisation that we had not prepared adequately during our years of success to meet the challenges we should have anticipated, and to sustain the advance of West Indies cricket to a new level of excellence,” he said. He was addressing the opening ceremony of the Sagicor West Indies Cricket High Performance Centre at the Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination, University of the West Indies on Sunday night.“The past 15 years have seen a steady loss of pride, dignity and status. We did not meet this challenge that was before us as we rested on our laurels of past success,” he stated.But Hunte said the current board had undertaken the necessary actions to regain West Indies’ competitiveness among cricketing elite.“Our energies must be devoted to building on the rich heritage and excellence of the past, but just as importantly, to look ahead to what we must do to bring us forward to regain our excellence.”The launch of the High Performance Centre forms part of the WICB’s immediate action plan to prepare for the road ahead.Hunte further listed a number of plans which the WICB directors had agreed on at a special board retreat in St Lucia last November.“We accepted that management has been ineffective in meeting the demands of a modern day sports governing body,” Hunte said.He noted that a comprehensive organisational redesigning plan has been formulated.“The plan will be implemented from July 1, 2010 and will include a new structure with each employee given a new job description and appropriate placement.“Changes will take place in staffing including the creation of posts with responsibilities for player relations, sponsorship management and event management and the appointment of new personnel to strengthen our department responsible for cricket operations.”Additionally, Hunte said the board is about to undertake the development of an action plan that outlines its response to the changes in the international landscape and the implications for the future of cricket in the region.“This will be a seminal action plan that will shape the future model for the administration and financing of cricket in the region. It is expected to cover all the critical areas of cricket,” he said.The WICB head also said the directors are committed to examining ways in which the governance and administration of the affairs of the board and other committees can be improved to ensure accountability and transparency. (EZS)