‘Identify root problems’ to save WI brand
FOR the West Indies brand to be reclaimed, the problem must first be recognised.
That was the view of Barbadian lawyer and sports commentator Donna Symmonds during a lecture entitled Reclaiming The Brand: Social, Cultural And Personal Empowerment Of West Indian Cricket In The Caribbean at the Queen’s Park Steel Shed on Tuesday night.
“Serious questions are being asked, mainly, what happened? Can this not be fixed? Those are some of the questions most people in the Caribbean and the cricket world would like answered . . . . Nothing comes of building a new structure on top of a faulty foundation. Why build a new roof on an old building with large cracks,” she said.
She mentioned that Cricket West Indies was looking at ways to revive the game but doing so was useless unless the root of the problem was identified.
“It is long past time for a new approach; it is time to reclaim the West Indies brand. Mainly, there are also reports relating specifically and discreetly to the state of cricket and how individual members are structuring their development programmes, coaching and managing their players to compete internationally and how they are preparing their teams . . . . Are there reports on how they are positioning themselves in the changing sporting environment and whether the systems in place are relevant to the new sporting reality?”
Symmonds added that the West Indies should not be thinking about management structure without first examining, understanding and finding the solutions as to why West Indies cricket has been in such decline.
She said once the root causes were identified, then an effective and up-to-date management structure should be applied to improve the game for both the male and female cricket teams.
“What Barbados needs may not be the same as Trinidad and Tobago or Antigua, or Guyana or St Lucia. Unless the reasons are identified we are not going to be able to fix it. It’s not what I feel or you feel; they have to know.”
She said that the media also had a major role to play in the resuscitation of the game.
“The media must investigate, report, analyse, critique, request and demand the installation of such decisions and keep fighting for the game of cricket. Cricket is worth saving.” (RG)