Greenidge urges WICB to appreciated Clive Lloyd's value
With an Englishman directing West Indies cricket and a South African tipped to take over as coach, former West Indies opener Gordon Greenidge has cited the disrespect shown by regional cricket authorities to retired former players.
And he has urged the West Indies Cricket Board to give newly appointed convener of the selection panel Clive Lloyd a free rein in his efforts to improve the performances of the West Indies team.
The Barbadian cricketing great said Lloyd should not be judged on short-term results but should be given the liberty to establish his own methods to rebuild the team. Lloyd was appointed head of the selection panel earlier this month on a two-year contract along with former fast bowlers Courtney Walsh and Eldine Baptiste who replaced Clyde Butts and Robert Haynes as selectors.
Comparing the situation in the West Indies to the football club, Manchester United, which have been struggling since the departure of long-time manager Sir Alex Ferguson, Greenidge stressed that Lloyd would need time to transfer his inputs to the team.
“It is a bit like what’s happening at Manchester United. Everyone’s expecting the new managers there to just pick up where Alex Ferguson left off – that’s impossible. The new man needs to transfer a serious input of his thinking to his team and the way he wants them to go. He needs to build a team and explain how he wants them to go forward.
“It’s the same thing with Clive Lloyd. Unfortunately, his job will be measured in terms of how successful the West Indies team is, that’s always been the case, but I think a change around is necessary and he needs to do that straight away,” Greenidge said.
Lloyd recently said that his main focus as a chief selector would be to “harness talent from the regional Under-19 tournaments” by using the High Performance Centre in Barbados to instill skills and retain them in West Indies cricket. He had also stated that former players would be brought in to fulfill different roles. Greenidge, who played 59 Tests and 57 ODIs under Lloyd’s leadership, hoped the former West Indies captain would be appreciated by the board and given the resources he needed.
“The powers-that-be need to accept Clive, appreciate him and look upon him as the person he is, someone who can get the job done. I feel in recent times there has been a lot of disrespect shown to players who have played in the past and there has been more dictatorial behaviour happening around cricket in the Caribbean.
“I haven’t been involved for a while which is a damn shame because a lot of players who played in the past have got so much to contribute and have not been given a chance to do so.
“I just hope they recognise Clive’s contribution to the West Indies and give him the necessary tools to work with. I don’t see a problem at all with Clive but it may be a problem with the people he’s working with or the people he reports to.”
The West Indies side has also had to cope with the departure of coach Ottis Gibson, who parted ways with the WICB before the ODI series against Bangladesh. Greenidge stressed that the board would have be patient with the new coach in the task of uniting the team.
“People are going to expect the new coach to bring an immediate turnaround and I don’t think that’s going to be possible. It’s going to take time for whoever takes over. I just hope that whoever it is can mould the group into a better fighting unit. It’s been very fragmented over the years and hopefully the new coach can make a difference and we can get away from the insular thinking,” Greenidge concluded.