Windies cricket rescue planned at New Year crisis meet

Hamilton, Dec 24 (IANS/CMC) Newly appointed director of West Indies Cricket Board Richard Pybus and coach Ottis Gibson have begun discussing plans to rebuild the stature of the Caribbean side following a series of embarrassing defeats overseas.

Pybus, who joined the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) in late October, Gibson and the West Indies selectors have scheduled a crisis meeting in the Caribbean for early next year to plot the way forward ahead of their next test series.

Four of West Indies’ last five Tests have seen heavy defeats, undoing the strides made over the previous year when the side had strung together six straight Test victories.

“We’ve had some discussions already about where we are and my thoughts on what we need to do to move forward,” Gibson said Monday.

“There’s a meeting pencilled in for us when we get back, including the selectors, to try and plot the way forward. We have five months before the next Test series which gives us some time.”

The West Indies suffered a two-nil hammering against New Zealand in the just ended three-match series after losing to India.

Reports suggest that discussions involving Gibson, Pybus and the selectors are likely to focus on the status of players such as Ravi Rampaul and Fidel Edwards, who have doubts over their viability for Test cricket, and whether to recall other experienced figures such as Ramnaresh Sarwan and Dwayne Bravo.

Meantime, Chris Gayle is likely to be available for the two Twenty20s that round off the tour next month, following the One-Day series.

Gayle picked up a hamstring injury during the one-day series in India and was ruled to have not recovered in time for the 50-overs segment of this trip.

He is currently in Sydney as part of his rehabilitation programme, and Gibson said the main target for him was the World Twenty20 defence in Bangladesh.

“We’re in communication with him and the people he’s working with in Australia,” Gibson said.

“He’s still injured, so would be an unnecessary risk to fast track him with what lies ahead. The World T20 is coming up – a format where he is king. He should be available for the two T20s.”

The West Indies next Test assignment is in May when they host New Zealand in a return series.

–IANS/CMC

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