Taylor too blasts WICB
Yet another senior West Indian cricketer has lashed out at regional cricket board and its selectors.
Following criticism by Chris Gayle and Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Jamaican fast bowler Jerome Taylor has complained that he only opted to play in the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) because of uncertainty surrounding his future.
Like Gayle, who is representing Royal Challengers Bangalore, Taylor signed up with an IPL team – Pune Warriors – after he was not selected for the just ended One-Day Digicel home series against Pakistan, which the visitors won 3-2.
The 26-year-old Taylor, batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan and wicket-keeper Denesh Ramdin were surprisingly not offered central retainer contracts with the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) last year.
“I asked the WICB for an NOC (no-objection certificate) since I wasn’t a contracted player with the WICB,” the pacer told the ESPNCricinfo website.
He was also excluded from the preliminary squad for the recent World Cup in the sub-continent but represented Jamaica in the early rounds of this year’s regional first-class championship before being sidelined with a minor injury.
“I didn’t get selected in the 30-man preliminary squad for the World Cup, which none of the selectors said anything to me about, even though I was fit enough to be preparing for the domestic first-class competition.
“I wasn’t sure I was going to be selected so I had to keep my options open. It was a case where I didn’t want to be at home, waiting to be selected, not get picked and let this opportunity pass me for a third year in a row.”
Taylor said he injured his back playing for Jamaica a few weeks ago but claimed the WICB never contacted him about the status of the injury until he was already in India last month.
“I had a chat with [selector] Robert Haynes during the four-day competition and an exchange of emails with the WICB CEO, Dr Ernest Hilaire, about the NOC, but no one contacted me about my injury before I came here [to India],” Taylor explained.
“The Jamaica Cricket Association sent me to see Dr Akshai Mansingh, who is on the WICB medical panel . . . he told me the injury was nothing to keep me out of playing for too long. That’s why I opted to come here.
“On April 7, 2011, after I had arrived in India, I received an email from Dr Hilaire – and the Pune Warriors management and medical staff also let me know – that he needed a report on my medical status for his purposes of informing the IPL (about my fitness).”
In explaining why Taylor was not offered a central contract last August, the WICB said they were disappointed by his “lack of commitment to his own rehabilitation”.
Taylor, who has taken 82 wickets in 29 tests and another 98 in 66 ODIs, also reiterated he was “still aspiring to lead the West Indies attack” and that the IPL was a platform to “give a good account of myself”.
“I’m not sure what they (selectors) are thinking right now but what can I do more than go out there and perform? That’s my focus right now. I have to make sure I’m performing and I’m fit, and the rest is left in their hands.
“At this moment my body is feeling good and I’m up for it and I have to make sure that I put the best of Jerome Taylor out on the park.”