Darren Sammy has suggested that the players had the right to play in leagues that offered them better financial support and hinted that the top cricketers would continue snubbing their international duty. Sammy also expressed concerns about West Indies' qualification for the 2019 World Cup.
Cricket West Indies(CWI) only picks players who feature in domestic competitions for international duties which have resulted in names like Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo and Darren Sammy missing from the team roster as the players choose to try their fortunes in the lucrative Twenty20 leagues around the world. The players have been involved in a pay dispute for a long time now and even left midway during the team's tour of India in 2014.
“I can’t tell a player not to play in a league when it could make them financially stable to look after their family,” Sammy told BBC Radio Five Live.
Sammy even criticised the West Indies cricket board after the team won their second Twenty20 title in India last year saying,"felt disrespected by the board coming into the tournament"
West Indies are ranked ninth in the ODI rankings with 77 rating points and now face an uphill task of breaking into the top eight teams by September 30th in order to automatically qualify for the 2019 World Cup. If the team fails to do so they will have to battle it out in the World Cup Qualifiers of 2018 to earn a spot in the tournament. The Caribbean team already missed out on the recently concluded Champions Trophy tournament owing to their low rank and Sammy expressed concerns over the standard of cricket played in the country.
“The way we structure our cricket, we’re not going anywhere,” said Sammy
“I’m very scared we will be relegated to be playing against Ireland and Scotland. It’s very sad for us. If you really have West Indies cricket at heart you will have the right players for all the formats playing and helping you get to tournaments.” he added.
Meanwhile, CWI stated that it has started working with the stakeholders to reach a resolution on the issue and is focused on direct qualification for the 2019 World Cup.
“Regarding player eligibility, since the July 2016 meeting in Fort Lauderdale, there has been ongoing meetings with the players in large and small groups, and we feel we are closer to a resolution,” the BBC quoted a CWI statement as saying.
“Cricket West Indies remains focused on its role to facilitate player development through its competitions and other support services.”