The ripples in Caribbean cricket shimmered for a while in Bangalore as the Trinidad and Tobago captain Daren Ganga spoke about it during the course of a press conference here on Tuesday.
“West Indies cricket is going through a storm. We the players are hoping that everything will be sorted out soon and a unified and strong West Indian team will again play in the international arena,” Ganga, who also briefly led West Indies in the past, said ahead of the Airtel Champions League Twenty20 tournament that will commence here on Thursday.
Trinidad and Tobago, the champion Twenty20 team from the West Indies, is placed in Group ‘A’ along with Deccan Chargers and Somerset.
Ganga said that efforts are on to end the impasse caused by the show-down between the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and the West Indies Players’ Association (WIPA) over player-contracts that led to a depleted Caribbean team suffering a Test series defeat at home against Bangladesh besides crashing out of the Champions Trophy in South Africa.
“The various West Indies Governments, Board officials and player representatives are in touch and it is an issue that plays on every West Indian cricketer’s mind,” Ganga said while key all-rounder Dwayne Bravo added: “I missed playing the Champions Trophy and it does affect you but we are all hoping for a way out.”
Ganga also mentioned that the WICB is planning to organise a domestic Twenty20 tournament on its own in the wake of the fall-out due to earlier sponsor millionaire Adam Stanford’s financial downfall.
“The charges against Stanford are being investigated but one must admit that the tournaments he conducted did help West Indian cricket besides the monetary incentives. A lot of infrastructure was improved and we are still reaping the benefits of his cricketing investments,” Ganga said.
He, meanwhile, sought to focus on the immediate task on hand — the Champions League.
“It will be great public relations (exercise) for West Indian cricket if we can manage to win the title here. Considering the problems back home, a title triumph would be most welcome.
“We have a good team with a share of international experience and yes Bravo does have his added Indian Premier League experience but our team’s success over the past few years has hinged on all the players performing well as a unit.
“We have prepared well for this tournament right from July onwards and we are keen to do well,” Ganga said.
Coach Kelvin Williams added that his players have trained hard to counter spin as ‘’the slow bowlers will have a bigger role on Indian pitches.” Trinidad and Tobago will play its first match against Somerset here on October 12.