Bigger staff for Windies team

By Tony Cozier in Bridgetown
Stabroek News
January 28, 2000

THE West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) is hoping a new, enlarged management staff will turn things around for the faltering Test team on overseas tours.

The group will comprise a manager, coach, "probably" an assistant coach, a physiotherapist and a sports psychologist and would work with the team "on a year-round basis", WICB president Pat Rousseau revealed on CANA Radio's "Cricket Line" programme on Wednesday.

"The (management) team we are putting together and the work we expect them to do as a unit over the next 12-18 months period should turn things around when we go overseas," Rousseau said.

"We have a long tour of England this year and it is going to be critical for the management team to get the best out of the players".

The West Indies have lost all 10 Tests and 14 of their 15 one-day internationals in their last three series overseas, in Pakistan, South Africa and New Zealand. That contrasts starkly with one Test series defeat at home, against Australia in 1995, in the last 26 years.

Rousseau said the WICB had examined the trend "to determine what is at the root of it".

"When the team came back from South Africa last year we did a lot of work with them," he noted. "We got in (sports psychologist) Dr. Rudi Webster to help and we did some close monitoring."

"We're going to have to start doing that both at home and overseas because the game is much more competitive today and we've got to get the standard up," he added.

The WICB added Dr. Webster and fielding coach Julien Fountain to the existing support staff of manager Clive Lloyd, coach, the late Malcolm Marshall, and trainer Dennis Waight for last year's home series against Australia and boosted it further with the inclusion of qualified physiotherapist Jacqui King for the subsequent World Cup in England.

It then dropped Dr. Webster, Fountain and King and, with the unavilability of the ailing Malcolm Marshall, saddled Lloyd with the dual role of manager-coach for limited-overs tournaments in Singapore, Toronto, Bangladesh and Sharjah.

Former Test captain Sir Viv Richards was drafted in as coach alongside manager Lloyd and trainer Waight for the recent tour of New Zealand that ended with defeat in both Tests and all five one-day internationals.

Lloyd has announced that he will not seek to renew his three-year contract that expired last October while a full-time replacement has to be found for Marshall. The WICB have advertised for both posts.

WICB reviewing coaching applications

By Tony Cozier

SIR Viv Richards has not been precluded from consideration for the post as full-time coach to the West Indies' team by the advertised qualifications of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), president Pat Rousseau indicated Wednesday night.

"I think it (the ad) was pitched on the basis that if you have these qualifications it would enhance your chances of getting the job," Rousseau said on CANA Radio's Cricket Line programme. "I don't think it was an absolute that if you missed one you were out."

"The forms which I saw from which the ads were taken were quite clear on that," he added.

Rousseau said a four-man committee of the WICB was now reviewing the applications for team manager and team coach and he expected they would determine a short-list by the end of this week.

"They will then set up to interview all those on the short list at the end of which they will make a determination," he explained. "They have been authorised by the Board to do it and I would imagine that what we would basically do is confirm those appointments." The ads that have appeared in the press for team coach list the qualification and experience as: +Advanced coaching certificate and certification or training in sports psychology and evidence of on-going development in the field or a combination of training and experience as a Test or first-class player +A minimum of three (3) years practical experience in coaching at Test or first-class level.

Revealing that he has applied for the post, Richards said during the New Zealand tour that his six years as West Indies captain should be qualification enough. He does not have an advanced coaching certificate or three years practical coaching experience at Test or first-class level.

"It's no different from any other job," Rousseau said. "If you apply for a senior post...they will say the basic requirement is X and if you have A, B, C, D it will enhance your opportunity to get the job." He explained that the qualifications were drafted by a WICB member who is a specialist in the field.

"If they conveyed the impression (that they were too stringent) it's unfortunate but when I saw them I certainly didn't have the impression that they were exclusive but rather that they were inclusive in that if you have them you had a better chance of getting the job," he added.

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