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OUTSIDE THE PULPIT: Puzzled over retainer contracts

Rev Errington Massiah

OUTSIDE THE PULPIT: Puzzled over retainer contracts

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It’s hopeless! I am like a hungry man who finds no fruit left on the trees and no grapes on the vines. All the grapes and all the tasty figs have been picked. – Micah 7:1

WHAT IT WRONG with the authorities of West Indies cricket – the board, selectors and coach? What is the thinking when it comes to the retainer contracts? Only God knows because it would seem as though they are making a mockery of the many supporters and fans at home and abroad.

I thought that afterthe Australia tour, players like Denesh Ramdin, Marlon Samuels and Kemar Roach wouldhave been left out of the15 contracted players.

There are some players who will only make enough runs to keep them in the team or to give them other tours andthis is evident in Roach’s reduction in speedand effectiveness.

He didn’t manageto take a wicket from41 overs and leaked runs at six an over.

Why is it that dashing all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite and improving left-arm spinner Jamal Warrican, two of the bright spots in theWest Indies team badly beaten by Australia, were not givenretainer contracts?

Brathwaite was certainly a revelation with the bat in his debut series, blasting half-centuries at Melbourne and Sydney.

Warrican had a good tour of Sri Lanka andwas the only West Indies bowler who took five wickets, including twoof Australia’s leading batsmen – David Warner and Steve Smith. To his credit, he was not dismissed in the series’ five innings, had five not outs and 44 runs.

The most heartening inclusion in the contracted list is that of Leon Johnson, who has been ignored by the selectors since the tour of South Africa. In his last Test appearance, Johnson scored 54 and 44 runs in Cape Town against Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel.

He is a fit replacement for Marlon Samuels.

With no immediate prospects of a new Joel Garner, Michael Holding or Andy Roberts in sight, Miguel Cummins should also be given a retainer contract.