How did the West Indies develop such a dominant team?

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May 24, 2006
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All fair points.

The bottom line is this.

The under 19 World Cup and the T20 world cups prove that this side has, at its core, as much - if not more - natural talent as any cricket nation on the planet. So that’s not an issue. Clearly, development is. At the bottom of all the politics, sh*t infrastructure, poor pitches, poor first class organisation, sh*t board etc, that’s the essence of it. Poor development. Fix that, fix West Indies cricket. It’s that simple. The icc could do it in a heartbeat.
When the West Indies were strong did they have no politics, good first class organisation, good board, good pitches etc? I don't know, just asking. I remember heaps of their players off playing county cricket though.
 

PhatBoy

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When the West Indies were strong did they have no politics, good first class organisation, good board, good pitches etc? I don't know, just asking. I remember heaps of their players off playing county cricket though.

County cricket had a big part in it. Effort was put into pitch preparation so they actually had some life in them. Inter-island pride was a big thing so there’s not much accounting for that on a cricket level admittedly. Politics-wise, from the moment Worrell took over as captain they were on the same page.
 

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Damon_3388

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Why do you need a string of NBA names?

Basketball has negatively affected cricket participation in Australia - especially in country areas - and we have barely a handful make the NBA

We've been at least among the top 10-15 countries in the world for basketball for the better part of 30 years though, so we're still producing quality basketball talent. Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad, etc. have never been near that.
 
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When the West Indies were strong did they have no politics, good first class organisation, good board, good pitches etc? I don't know, just asking. I remember heaps of their players off playing county cricket though.
County cricket had a big part in it. Effort was put into pitch preparation so they actually had some life in them. Inter-island pride was a big thing so there’s not much accounting for that on a cricket level admittedly. Politics-wise, from the moment Worrell took over as captain they were on the same page.

There was always politics under the surface even in the glory days. Pay disputes happened, and hometown selections were par for the course. The unity of the team covered over the cracks.

The pitches and grounds were good because there was money flowing from sponsors, the money was flowing because the quality was good, and the quality was good because of the international experience.
 

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For what it's worth, their domestic cricket has been dominated by spin bowlers over the past 5-10 years. It's a struggle to find many batsmen who have a FC average over 37-38 too.

They do seem to produce a lot more spinners these days.

As a complete outsider I'd say there's a big cultural element to that. When you think back to the great bowlers of the past it was Ambrose, Walsh, Garner, Marshall, Bishop etc. which are all English names. And they were all African (origin). And apart from Marshall were pretty much all tall. These sort of guys still exist, but there aren't as many making it to superstar status.

These days you have Rampaul, Narine, Bishoo etc. and the two leading wicket takers in their FC comp are Permaul and Imran Khan. There has always been a significant Indian population in the region (particularly in Guyana and Trinidad & Tobago) but I reckon that sports like soccer, baseball and track & field have drawn more African athletes away from cricket increasing the proportion of Indian players. I base this purely on observation of course.
 

Hellgood

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South Africa had an Imraan Khan too who opened the batting in the McGain test in 2009.
 

Damon_3388

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They do seem to produce a lot more spinners these days.

As a complete outsider I'd say there's a big cultural element to that. When you think back to the great bowlers of the past it was Ambrose, Walsh, Garner, Marshall, Bishop etc. which are all English names. And they were all African (origin). And apart from Marshall were pretty much all tall. These sort of guys still exist, but there aren't as many making it to superstar status.

These days you have Rampaul, Narine, Bishoo etc. and the two leading wicket takers in their FC comp are Permaul and Imran Khan. There has always been a significant Indian population in the region (particularly in Guyana and Trinidad & Tobago) but I reckon that sports like soccer, baseball and track & field have drawn more African athletes away from cricket increasing the proportion of Indian players. I base this purely on observation of course.

Has migration to the UK during the '70s and '80s also taken away some of the home-grown future generations too?
 

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Scotland

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Has migration to the UK during the '70s and '80s also taken away some of the home-grown future generations too?

I know approximately zero about Caribbean migration patterns in that era, but as far as cricket talent from the region representing England there haven't been that many.
 

PhatBoy

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I know approximately zero about Caribbean migration patterns in that era, but as far as cricket talent from the region representing England there haven't been that many.

Jordan, Headley (think he was actually English but obviously had great Caribbean genes), Malcolm, DeFreitas, Small, Joey Benjamin, Chris Lewis, Carberry is of Guyanese and Barbadian blood. That’s all since 1990. I know Norman Cowans from the 80s was Jamaican.
 

Gough

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Jordan, Headley (think he was actually English but obviously had great Caribbean genes), Malcolm, DeFreitas, Small, Joey Benjamin, Chris Lewis, Carberry is of Guyanese and Barbadian blood. That’s all since 1990. I know Norman Cowans from the 80s was Jamaican.
I think the surge in popularity in football hasn't helped, when the first black cricketers were breaking into the team football in England was almost overtly racist and while cricket wasn't perfect it has always been far more welcoming to players of colour. Nowadays football is far more inclusive, far more attractive in terms of earnings too and more young black kids are choosing to play it. Just a theory.
 

Scotland

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I don't know what County wages are like but the average salary is GBP50k in League Two, which is the 4th tier. Goes up to 67k in League One, 200k in the Championship and around 2m in the Premier League. Right now there would be 600 players in the Championship earning 200k and 500 in the PL earning 2m, on average. Cricket can't compete with that.
 

GC wayno

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I’m not sure what happened to West Indian cricket but I wish those glory days would return.

I miss a strong windies team.
 

Tyberious Funk

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What's the deal with Archer?

The kid is a serious talent but is trying to qualify for England. According to his CricInfo biography he was essentially poached from the nets in Barbados. IMHO, that's a pretty sad statement about West Indian cricket. Archer could be playing Test cricket for the West Indies right now, but would rather wait until 2022 and play for England.
 

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