WICB wants answers from players refusing contracts
THE West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) wants to know why three of the region’s most high-profile players have refused one-year central, retainer contracts.
In announcing its full list of contracted players that does not include Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard, the WICB said yesterday it planned to seek answers from the threesome.
“Gayle and Bravo, who were both offered ‘A’ contracts, and Pollard, who was offered a ‘C’ contract, have indicated to the WICB that they were not minded to take up the offers,” the board said in a media release.
“The WICB has written to Gayle, Bravo and Pollard seeking details of the issues which caused them not to take up the offer in an attempt to understand same and so that the issues can be addressed for future contract offers.”
In order to complete the list of 15 players with central retainer contracts for the period October 1, 2010 to September 30, 2011, the WICB offered deals to the Jamaican trio of Carlton Baugh Jr, Dave Bernard Jr and Andre Russell – the latter two were originally offered developmental contracts.
With Gayle and Bravo declining the offers, it leaves veteran batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul as the only player with a Grade A contract which is believed to be worth US$120 000.
Grade B contracts, which have gone to Darren Sammy and Sulieman Benn are valued at US$100 000, while Grade C contracts for the remaining 12 players are US$80 000. The development contracts for eight promising players are for US$24 000.
The retainer contracts, which offer players a sense of security, are on top of match/tour fees and under the terms and conditions of the retainers, players must make themselves available for West Indies duties at all times.
It is believed in many quarters that Gayle, Bravo and Pollard have not accepted the WICB contracts because they want to keep their options open to overseas interests, having secured lucrative deals in Twenty20 leagues in India, Australia and England in recent years.
They have informed the WICB that they would be available for West Indies selection and were committed to West Indies cricket, but well-placed sources said it was unlikely that Gayle and Bravo, captain and vice-captain for most of the last three years, would be by-passed for leadership positions.
Well-placed sources said interviews with potential candidates for the captain would be conducted during the regional limited-overs competition in Jamaica from October 14 to 24.
The WICB said it was appreciative of the stated commitment by Gayle, Bravo and Pollard to West Indies cricket and reiterated that possession of a retainer contract was not a pre-requisite for selection to the West Indies team, while pointing out that selection of players would be in accordance with the WICB’s selection criteria.
Despite not having the signatures of Gayle, Bravo and Pollard, the WICB chief executive officer Dr Ernest Hilaire was delighted to have a full complement of players on central retainer and developmental contracts.
“We see this as a clear demonstration by the players themselves that they are committed to working with the WICB towards the development and success of West Indies cricket,” Hilaire said.
“The WICB is encouraged by the overwhelmingly positive response from the players and we look forward to working very closely with each of them in the coming year.”
Grade A: Shivnarine Chanderpaul
Grade B: Sulieman Benn, Darren Sammy
Grade C: Kemar Roach, Brendan Nash, Adrian Barath, Darren Bravo, Shane Shillingford, Nikita Miller, Devon Smith, Ravi Rampaul, Nelon Pascal, David Bernard Jr, Andre Russell, Carlton Baugh Jr.
Developmental contracts: Kirk Edwards, Gavin Tonge, Andre Fletcher, Chadwick Walton, Devendra Bishoo, Assad Fudadin, Imran Khan, Kevin Stoute.