Lara continues to show WICB who is boss Sports comment
Stabroek News
April 16, 2003

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It was kind of nice to hear West Indies team coach for the just-concluded first test against Australia Gus Logie talking about the importance of attitude.

The 42-year-old former West Indies middle-order batsman and interim team coach spoke after his team’s nine wicket defeat of the “cohesive atmosphere in the team’s dressing room....where people respect each other.... where people try to share with each other,”

after the game ended on Sunday with over a day to spare.

“We are hoping to see some improvement there and we are hopeful the players continue to buy into it. This loss may be considered a setback, but the players realise where we need to improve and they will.,” Logie said.

If that all sounds too good to be true then you may be right. Maybe it is.

While one understands that Logie wants to build a team that is united the fact of the matter is that he has inherited one that is not. It is no use telling the public otherwise. Not when they know of all the unsavoury acts that transpired before the test match. The sacking of Carl Hooper as captain, Hooper’s last minute withdrawal, the Bennett King fiasco, Chris Gayle’s omission, the late arrival of the West Indies team, etc. etc. etc.

One would understand if Logie is frank with the public and call a spade a spade. Glossing over his team’s faults won’t help the situation.

What Logie needs to do is to try and get some discipline in the team or he will go the way of his predecessor.

You cannot handle this present West Indies team with kid gloves especially Brian Charles Lara. As usual, Lara remains a law unto himself. How else can one explain the mercurial left-hander’s absence from the post-match press conference at the first Cable and Wireless test match at Bourda.

Soon after his team was crushed by the Australian juggernaut Lara was visibly missing from the press conference. He was later seen relaxing at the pool-side of Le Meridien Pegasus.

Many will recall Lara refusing to speak to the media in Barbados when the team returned to the Caribbean after an overseas tour. He has also visited Guyana and refused to speak with the media here. His list of indiscretions is long and doesn’t need to be mentioned here.

But how much longer will Lara continue to snob the media, and the Caribbean public at large. In lawn tennis, world number one Lleyton Hewitt was fined $106,000 for missing a scheduled television recording before a game. That fine was later reduced to $20,000.

Perhaps the ICC needs to institute fines for players who blatantly refuse to speak to the media.

I cannot recall any other captain behaving with such arrogance off and on the field of play and not only consistently getting away with it but even being rewarded with positions of the utmost importance.

Yet Lara gets away with it, no explanation. Lara’s behaviour is typical of prima donnas. Believing they are indispensable and that they are favourites with those in authority, they disregard rules, show no team unity and look out only for number one.

You never saw that from Richie Richardson or Courtney Walsh and one doubts if Hooper, favourite whipping target of the press would have dared to do such a thing.

But Lara continues to show the WICB who is boss.

Perhaps it was enough that he scored a hundred. His sins can be forgiven especially now at easter time.

One would hope that Lara’s heir apparent Ramnaresh Sarwan does not follow the path of his captain or for that matter any of the other West Indies players.

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