WICB will fight demotion by ICC at Dubai meeting

By Paras Ramoutar, IANS

Port-of-Spain : The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) will fight any plans to demote its national cricket team to a possible second grouping at the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) executive committee meeting to be held in Dubai Sunday.

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The WICB’s stand came after ICC expressed its intention to limit the first grouping of Test playing nations to the top seven teams, which means the two-time world champions will have only Bangladesh and Zimbabwe to play against.

In a release issued on behalf of the WICB, board president Julian Hunte, who left for Dubai Friday to attend the executive committee meeting, said this is an attempt to marginalise the nation’s cricket and the WICB will never allow this to happen.

“In most cricket playing countries, West Indies team is liked the most after their national side and we have to use this as motivation to get back to the top of world cricket again,” Hunte said.

“Our cricketers must be mindful of this when they go out to play, since, if our position in world cricket does not improve, we might find our options and opportunities severely limited,” he noted.

WICB CEO Donald Peters has expressed his reservations over the multi-million dollar Indian Premier League (IPL) which, according to him, is the second biggest threat to West Indies cricket, and the board is determined to raise the issue at the upcoming meeting.

Other issues which the WICB is expected to raise in the meeting includes the use of technology to review umpiring decisions and the removal of its legendary umpire Steve Bucknor from the third Test between India and Australia at Perth.

The WICB also mentioned in the release that it fully supports the use of any technology in the game that will ensure fairness and improve decision-making.