Dr Keith Rowley © Getty Images
Dr Keith Rowley © Getty Images

Dr Keith Rowley, the prime minister of Trinidad & Tobago, who is also a part of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), says cricket in the region has been “hijacked by a small clique of people”. CARICOM has been very critical of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), and has also blamed the cricket board for West Indies’ decline in the ICC Test and ODI rankings. Last year, CARICOM recommended through its cricket review panel that WICB should be dissolved, but the board president Dave Cameron had rejected it after his third successive selection for the post. West Indies are currently 8th in ICC Test Rankings, 9th in ODIs and 6th in T20Is, despite winning the ICC World T20 2016.

In an interview with the Trinidad-based CNC3 TV, Rowley said West Indies will keep “spinning top in mud” unless the question of who owns the cricket in Caribbean is answered. Rowley also said this “small clique of people” is hell bent on destroying cricket in the region. “Caribbean cricket has been hijacked by a small clique of people who are hell bent on destroying Caribbean cricket. And this is my position that unless the question is answered as to who owns that asset we spinning top in mud.”

Rowley said WICB have to please their shareholders, even if he does not know who they are. “I was told to my face, me and my colleague the Prime Minister of Grenada, that you all have no say in this. This is West Indies Cricket Inc. West Indies Cricket Incorporated. And it is their shareholders that they have to please. I don’t know who the shareholders are, but what I do know [is] unless there are drastic changes to the current arrangements West Indies cricket will never get back to where it is expected to be.”

“You know how painful it is for me. In this country, lining up outside the [Queen's Park] Oval from 6′o clock in the morning to get in. That’s how cricket used to be. Barbados is playing Trinidad & Tobago and the Oval is full because you got to beat them Bajans, ha! And now, you are passing outside the Oval and you ask, “what’s happening in there?” You know how painful that is,” Rowley added.