Otis Gibson Sacked by the WICB

Otis Gibson

Otis Gibson

The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) sacked Coach Otis Gibson tonight, a decision known 48 hours before it was announced. Hurray for transparency. The news that he was terminated by a telephone call after just renewing a contract for 2 years makes the Gibson sacking another saga to observe for the comedic relief it offers. It is no secret West Indies has become the laughing stock of the cricket world. The inability of the WIBC to stop the slide of performance by the regional cricket team for nearly 2 decades confirms the leadership vacuum which continues to choke success in almost every facet of  enterprise in our region. The most recent ICC Rankings positions West Indies at #8 out of 10 teams with only the minnows Zimbabwe and Bangladesh  at #9 and #10 bottoming out the rankings.

The WICB and the UWI represent two regional entities which have served the English Caribbean people well. In recent years these two entities have struggled to stay relevant in a world advancing at pace. It seems moronic that the WICB on the eve of an international ODI series against Bangladesh would become trapped into making such a significant management change.  Based on the WIBC press release the team manager, Sir Richie Richardson, will perform a dual role in the current series. While the WICB saga continues to unfold Barbadians were informed of very low registration at UWI, Cave Hill. Connect the dots.

All taxpayers in the cricket English Caribbean have a vested interest in the efficient management of regional cricket. In the build up to the 2007 regional governments mobilized several projects, including the building of new stadia, to host CWC2007.  And it has been reported greater than $500 million was spent by regional governments which taxpayers will have to repay for years to come. To observe the cavalier approach how cricket is being managed by the WIBC continues to be jaw dropping stuff.

A region which dominated world cricket for almost 20 years and is unable to build on past success to sustain future success. We play musical chairs with coaches and players yet one entity remains unchanged, as rigid as it was which it was named the WICBC.

BU can blog hundreds of words to express the feelings of the fans of West Indies cricket who have become numb to the poor performances  of the  cricket team on the field and in the boardroom. To express disgust at the latest black eye suffered by West Indies cricket is analogous to flogging a dead horse.

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73 responses to “Otis Gibson Sacked by the WICB

  1. @GP,

    Very pleasant reading, concise and well written. Thank you.

    Your early experiences mirror my own.

    Sadly, passion, dedication and honour such as you mention, is no longer.

    And yes, in that too, cricket mirrors life in many ways.

    Which is why I see the decline in cricket as mirroring the decline in Caribbean politics and economies.


    Have a good weekend.



    thanks Crusoe


  3. I think there are two factors at play, the dominant one being that we just don’t play as much cricket as boys as before.

    The second factor is that other larger countries have resources, money and population size to feed into cricket we will never have. Contracts to keep the players in money and training expertise separate the have’s from the have nots.

    Having said that I always wonder what would happen in cricket if we suddenly produced bowlers the caliber of those in the past and were miraculously able to inject them into our team.

    Look what Mitchell Johnson did with England!!

    Maybe there is a third factor at play, with the modernization we have become too fat and lazy to bowl really fast and sustain it.

    Watch how we Bajans stowaways used to move back when the West Indies produced Michael Holding. There is an energy and litheness we just do not see today.

    Enjoy the skill of Michael Holding and watch how we moved in the field.

    We have an obesity epidemic here.


  4. Douglas San Hue dead at 82.



    Most of us WI cricket fans seem to resonate with the successes of 76-95.
    However, we seem toforget that we were champions also from 62 – 68 also.
    In those days there were no lot of coaches.

    If one checks the archives in Cricinfo.com, it is noteworthy that the representatives of the team performed credibly in inter territorial games, and later in the Shell shield, and took these performances into test cricket. Statistics reveal why these persons were chosen, and that they deserved thier selection– even though in those days we had no real first classseason prior to 66, and only a limited oneafter that..

    When you review the statistics of players selected for most of the other teams today, we see that players have a relatively long domestic first class record prior to selection. In contrast, we seem to elect jokers who have played little first class cricket and a relative lack of other type of cricket.
    How can we expect better results? .


  6. The following was posted to BU Sports Corner by Clifford Jones

    West Indines does not need a foriegn coach.It has not worked and it will never work.Since 1995 the year West Indies lost the Frank Worrell Trophy to Australia we have never been able to retain that standard of play that we enjoyed under Clive Lloyd and Viv Richards.The main cause of this problem is that all West Indies Test players were forced by the WICB to return to the West Indies and play in the local cricket matches arranged by the WICB to be considered for selection in Test Matches.This started with Desmond Haynes not being considered for the Australian Tour of 1995 and has continued ever since.Gradually all upcoming West Indies players have not been playing League and County Cricket in England as they had been doing since the 1930’s,starting with Learie Constantine and George Headley.My suggestion is that once you discover a talented player that shows a lot of promise take the next step and get him a contract in League or County Cricket in England.The discipline and responsibility learned in England cannot be replaced by coaching in the West Indies.When West Indies dominated Test Match cricket and did not lose a Test Series for fifteen years every cricketer on the team had a background of League or County Cricket.Three West Indies Cricketers have been appointed captains of County Cricket Teams in England-Roy Marshall(Barbados),Garry Sobers(Barbados)and Clive Lloyd(Guyana).Sir Frank Worrell said it best in his book Cricket Punch published in 1960 "On the contrary nothing is better for a young cricketer from the tropics than to have experience in the leagues,for it in league cricket that you come up against so many different varieties of bowling from the ones you are used to in our home country, you meet swerve,spin ,varying pace -the lot.Furthermore,it gives the cricketer from the tropics invaluable experience of English weather and English wickets.It also gives a young player a sense of responsibility,and a strong sense of responsibility is essential for any good international cricketer.Need I say more?"Frank Worrell won the batting average for both teams-In his First Test Match Series in the West Indies1948(147.00) In his last Test Match Series in the West Indies 1962 (83.00) 14 years apart.






  8. GEORGIE PORGIE | August 23, 2014 at 1:41 PM |

    Most of us WI cricket fans seem to resonate with the successes of 76-95.
    However, we seem toforget that we were champions also from 62 – 68 also.
    In those days there were no lot of coaches.

    The answer is fast bowling

    … Hall and Griffith then

    …… Roberts, Holding, Garner, Croft, Walsh Amprose, Benjamins, Patterson

    Holding went to Australia against some people’s advice … not enough known about him

    Apart from our flirt with spin in the 50’s … Ramadin and Valentine …. fast bowling has done it for us in both those periods of dominance.

    To win you have to take 20 wickets and while we had good batsmen …. no, exceptional batsmen ……. in those periods we bowled other sides out cheaply.

    We used to collapse regularly inspite of the batting talent.

    The difference between then and now is that in those days we would inevitably be saved by Sobers or someone else.

    Remember Roberts and Murray against Pakistan in the World Cup in 1975 and who could forget Dujon’s priceless, if flawed,masterpieces against Australia. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjPxqFJ4Re4

    I still rather watch Dujon bat than any other batsman … sublime, but flawed..

    If we want to play the world at their game now we need coaches and technical expertise.

    Otherwise, we need some exceptional bowlers of pace that bring to the game an element of fear ….. and that cannot be coached.

    You have it or you don’t ….. and ….. if you have it you can get better by practice.

    Even joke batsmen can win a game of cricket once their bowlers have restricted the opposition.

    Australia did not have truly great batsmen after 1995, but their bowling unit restricted the opposition and they were unbeatable.

    And just to reinforce the pace argument, remember Thomson and Lillee in the 1970’s and Australia’s dominance.

    … and Mitchell Johnson taking apart England even though the batsmen were good.

    Look at Pakistan with Waqar and Wasim and Imran Khan. True pace wins matches.

    …. but, diligence, training and patience can also win if the opposition is limited in its ability to bowl you out and unsettle your batsmen.


  9. Who can forget Lindwall and Miller!For me the finest ,most intelligent bowler
    in West Indies cricket thus far was Curtly Ambrose.The bean stalk walking back to his run up and flicking his elbow into his waist and each of the six balls delivered was different and at lightning speed.He was a fit and very focused individual.


  10. It’s pace!!!

    The Invincibles of 1948 vintage.

    Yeah they had Bradman but Lindwall and Miller ensured the opposition was bowled out twice.

    Bradman with no Lindwall and Miller could force dull draws. Lindwall and Miller did the deeds.

    …. and then there was Larwood and Voce …

    West Indies took a really long time to figure it out.


  11. Then there was the fearsome Jamaican Roy Gilchrist with a temperament of an untamed stallion who dared a batsman to hit him for 4 or 6,because the next ball was a scalper with an appropriate comment spoken in French introducing what is now referred to as ‘Sledging’.And what the whiteys did?Complained of his bowling action and Frank Worrell,after taking him on tour to Australia against the wishes of the WICBC,was forced to leave him out of further consideration.It won’t happen today because most of the ICC whitey teams have adopted and modified the psychology of sledging to good advantage,Australia being the most effective of course, given their genetic makeup


  12. @Gabriel

    Apples and Oranges

    Two different eras, sledging in sport is now the accepted practice whereas in Worrell’s time it was “infra dig” this was a time when England was still debating the wisdom of having a professional cricketer as their Captain. This was the time of “gentleman amateurs” e.g. Peter May of Cambridge and Colin Cowdrey of Oxford as English cricket captains.

    BTW Gilchrist didn’t tour Australia with the WI Cricket team


  13. Gilchrist got sent home from the 58-59 tour of India for bowling beamers. Rumour has it he pulled a knife on his captain.


    Gerry Alexander was the captain.

    He got hit for 3 boundaries and the Indian batsman taunted him.

    Couldn’t take it so he retaliated.

    …. some stallion!!

    …. but I always heard he was fast.

    “Roy Gilchrist (28 June 1934 – 18 July 2001) was a West Indian cricketer who played 13 Tests for the West Indies in the 1950s. He was born in Saint Thomas, Jamaica and died of Parkinson’s disease in St Catherine, Jamaica at the age of 67.

    Gilchrist’s Test career might have been longer had he not been sent home halfway through West Indies’ 1958–59 tour of the Indian subcontinent after disagreements with captain Gerry Alexander. One cause of this was Gilchrist’s “penchant for bowling beamers from 18 yards” as Cricinfo has put it, as well as off-field arguments. [1] This involved deliberately overstepping the bowling mark by four yards to come closer to the batsman and intimidate him. In the Fourth Test at Nagpur, after Indian batsman AG Kripal Singh had struck three consecutive boundaries and taunted him, Gilchrist deliberately overstepped the bowling mark by six metres and delivered a bouncer which hit the Sikh batsman on the head and dislodged his turban.

    In the following match, against North Zone, he unleashed a barrage of beamers against Swaranjit Singh, whom Alexander had known at Cambridge. He ignored his captain’s instruction to cease this form of attack. During the lunch interval Alexander substituted him, and he was subsequently sent home, while the other players proceeded to Pakistan for the remainder of the tour. Alexander told him: “You will leave by the next flight. Good afternoon.” This marked the end of his Test career. There were suggestions that he had pulled a knife on Alexander.[2]

    He later attracted attention while playing in the Lancashire League by removing a stump from the playing arena and striking an opposition batsman in the head.

    Gilchrist was said to be one of only four bowlers ever to have actually hit the sightscreen after first bounce on the pitch, on the full.[3] (There is some doubt about this, as the scorebook for the match in question, however, showed only three extras).

    After the end of his Test career he spent many years playing in the English Lancashire League. He was successful there, reaching 100 wickets each season until 1979, but there were continued stories of his violent temper. In 1967, Gilchrist was sentenced to three months’ probation after attacking his wife Novlyn during an argument. The judge in the case said: “I hate to think English sport has sunk so far that brutes will be tolerated because they are good at games.”[1]

    He returned to India in 1962-3, playing for Hyderabad and South Zone.[4]“


  14. Matching starting in 1 hour. West Indies need to keep the momentum going.




    Who are the people who influenced and inspired you the most, in your career and in life in general?

    All my uncles on both sides were cricketers. My father captained the local team, so it was cricket all around. We followed them around, fed off the passion and learnt a lot from them. Interestingly, it was a shopkeeper back in my village, Mr Ramsey and his family, who influenced me in the early days by providing money to travel to Georgetown to see and play cricket, and I was inspired by being in a village that produced so many West Indian cricket heroes like Rohan Kanhai, Basil Butcher, Joe Solomon, John Trim and Robert Christiani. I also read a lot at the local libraries about earlier heroes like Learie Constantine, George Headley, Weekes, Worrell, Walcott (the 3 W’s), Frank Worrell and then came the genius Garfield Sobers. These were the people who influenced and inspired me the most, people who you copied mentally and physically and felt their vibrations and sense of purpose, those who set high standards and the strong foundations for us who came later.

    Why do you think West Indies cricket has deteriorated like it has?

    The feeder system leaves a lot to be desired. There are too many gaps from the grassroot to the national and international levels. These gaps are a lot wider than in my era. Also to be a success, you have to be hungry, to want it and be prepared to work hard. Most of all, you must have discipline. I don’t know how many have the upbringing and the influence in their lives to have that burning desire and discipline to make it happen. The mental strength and understanding that you are in a battle, in a war, you do not see danger or anxiety, but you must win the battle mentally and physically, whether as a batsman or a bowler. That’s how we played as a team in my era and were able to dominate for so long.


  16. jesus christ wunna sound ole as shit up in here,,starting to think that all wunna from the same nursing home .btw wuh happen to professor brass bowl today,,,


  17. sorry to mek wunna run away from wu nna liltle sport of pac me on the back,,but …. btw how come nobody mentioned one of the best spin bowlers lance gibbs,,,


  18. if you like vintage,,,,this article makes for palatable reading while sipping from the cup of oldies but goldies
    aptly titled,,the westindies team of the century,,,written way back in the 90 ts/ but it conjures up fond memories of when cricketers played for the love of game and country



  19. Hants et al

    Any thoughts about the fact Pollard, Smith, Malik and Coach Robin Singh will not be turning out for the Tridents in the Champions League? What it shows is he who pays the piper plays the tune, in this case India (IPL).


  20. David it is about money and the way West Indies cricketers are treated in the IPL.

    Thousands of adoring fans and “groupies”.

    These modern day cricketers are selling their services to the highest bidder.


  21. It was hilarious as well as embarrassing to watch the groundsmen in St. Kitts battle the wind and rain to get the covers on in the rained out T20.


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