‘Flipper’: Outsourcing Players The Better Option

Former West Indies fast bowler Kenneth “Flipper” Benjamin believes the time has come for the Leeward Islands Cricket Association (LICA) to start outsourcing talent.

The former Leewards player made his statement while rebutting coach of the Leewards team, Ridley Jacobs, who said he would reject any recommendations supporting the importation of players from outside the sub-region.

“You can’t have someone in Jamaica like a Danza Hyatt who is probably better than most of the Leeward Islands batsmen sitting down because Jamaica’s selectors did not select him,” Benjamin said.

“We can’t have someone like a Miguel Cummins in Barbados, but because he wasn’t selected in the Barbados squad sitting down. How are these guys going to help West Indies cricket and they are descent players?

“It is the small-mindedness of the cricket people around the region and the non-vision and the non-love for West Indies cricket because everybody is so territorial that if you are not from my area then I don’t want to select you and we have to get away from that,” he added.

Benjamin, who is currently second vice president of Antigua & Barbuda Cricket Association (ABCA), said also that LICA should work towards the formulisation of a plan that would outline a projected path towards bringing its cricket and cricketers back on track.

“What are we going forward on? It is nice to sit down with a few people, but you have to have documents and you must have some sort of research or something to guide you along and say this is the best way to go forward,” he said.

“This is something we have discussed on a wide scope across the Leeward Islands and even the West Indies and this is the guide that we are going to follow.

“The confidence, the mental aspect has been shattered, so I think we need to look on a three to five-year development plan moving forward,” the former player added.

Jacobs following the team’s five-wicket loss to Trinidad and Tobago on Wednesday in the NAGICO Super50 tournament, said players in the Leewards are just as good as any. He said proper guidance and support could prove to be the missing ingredients.

Leeward Islands will wrap of their Super50 campaign on Monday when they take on Barbados at the Queen’s Park Oval.

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2 thoughts on “‘Flipper’: Outsourcing Players The Better Option

  1. This is the same Flipper who does not want outsiders playing for Liberta? Antigua have been stifling the career of the young wicket keeper batsman form Guyana for years and he could have make the side purely as a batsman if they wanted to push Thomas. So although it is a good idea to out source players, lets fixed the small minded stuff we have in Antigua first.

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  2. The outsourcing of players must be viewed in a holistic manner, therefore, leeward island players must be afforded equal opportunity to be outsourced to other territories.

    The move suggested by Kenneth comes across as a band aid solution for leeward island cricket, meaning that because we have not been doing well, discarded players from other territories should fill the leewards gap. From that perspective i firmly disagree with Kenneth, unless the format of the competition will be changed. On the contrary Ridley’s point must be the more suitable solution to our cricket. Injection of resource to enhance the development of players. The absence of a proper structured programme and adequate resource is the foundation of the problem in leeward island cricket.

    Recall that the Windward Islands were at the bottom of the table for many years and their recent performances have been outstanding. Is it because they have included players from other territories into their team? This is a question for us to ponder.

    I am of the firm view that the failure of sports in the leeward island is largely due to poor administrative structure along with our governments and private sector’s reluctance to make meaningful investment in sports.

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