The real tragedy isn't that the once mighty (a long long time ago) West Indies team was beaten today by bottom of the rung Bangladesh. You can excuse that given that the team calling itself West Indies for this match was made up of has beens, never was-es and rank newcomers who had been pulled together at the 11th hour when the regular team went on strike.
Call them scabs or whatever you want for crossing the picket line they still went out and tried their best and managed to be competitive which is more than you can say for the regular West Indies team sixty percent of the time.
No, The real tragedy is that two sides which should have the best interests of West Indies cricket at heart and work together towards getting our team back to the top have somehow in recent years found a way to always manage to screw over the game and embarrass the West Indian public and fans on numerous occasions.
I've lost count of the number of attempted strikes, most called on the brink of a test series by the West Indies Players Association (WIPA) after talks with the WICB have broken down, that have occurred recently and while both sides innocently try to play the victim it is us the cricket fans who are forced to suffer.
From one perspective its actually somehow reminiscent of my childhood playing in de road or on the cow pasture when a bats owner might get vex when he got out and would pick up bat and go home finishing the game prematurely and leaving the other children just hanging their heads, hangs in pockets standing looking stupid, wishing they had their own bats and cricket equipment. Own way team quits field over dispute or in this case just decides not to play cause they want a better deal.
And who's to blame? I mean its a given these days that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) is incompetent. The public is well aware of that fact. Numerous changes in personnel seem to have done nothing for its professionalism or its outlook on the game but at the same time the Board is not the only guilty party here. WIPA is just as guilty if not moreso for holding the great game for ransom, picking up their bats and going home, especially with their penchant for last minute seemingly out of the blue strikes.
And I not calling no names but lets look at this thing from another angle too. WICB presidents have come and gone, WICB CEOs and management teams have come and gone, Team captains have come and gone and the problems and somehow WIPA president Ramnarine still remain. I aint saying its his fault but hey if you looking for commonality in all the disputes well.........
As I said somewhere else appearance counts a lot in the business world. Its not just enough to be right but one must also appear to be right. That's where good PR comes in. Not saying that WIPA is correct in this impasse but WIPA definetly doesn't do good PR. Threatening to strike at the 11th hour, just before an international series is to begin, giving the general public little notice about your issues and the reasons for the strike isnt good PR and it doesn't win you fans. It just makes you look like petulant children forever playing a game of brinkmanship.
All told though, I'm not really surprised. No one really cares about the game or the fans unless they stop paying to watch games. Its all about the cash these days and one can see it from the lackluster on the field approach by the players. Not that players shouldn't be fairly compensated but at the same time, it would be nice to see some effort, grit, determination and perhaps a sprinkling of love for the game shine though. Oh and some pride. We used to have a proud team when we were on top what seems like a long long long time ago. They wanted to win, they cared about winning, they realized what winning meant to the West Indian public. Not so anymore.
Now West Indies cricket just sucks. Go on with your strikes and disputes, alienate the few remaining fans you have why don't you. Keep it up and you soon wont have any kingdom to fight over.
Thank you WIPA and WICB for killing our cricket. You're both doing a bang up job! Keep it up.