West Indies abandon tour over pay row, Sri Lanka step in

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Oct 18, 2014 08:43 IST

West Indies cricket plunged to a new low on Friday after the regional board’s payment dispute with its players spun out of control, resulting in the tour being abruptly called off.

The sudden development followed the West Indies board’s failure to assure the Indian board that the ongoing dispute would not disrupt the tour.

The final trigger for the BCCI was an e-mail from team manager Richie Richardson before the Dharamsala match that said the players have refused to carry on.
“Shocked and surprised”, the BCCI demonstrated its influence by roping in Sri Lanka to play five one-day internationals from November 1.

After senior BCCI officials made it clear they could take legal action, a jittery West Indies board made a statement that the tour has not been called off and it would make an announcement after the Dharamsala ODI. However, the BCCI showed it had run out of patience, releasing a fresh timeline explaining how the West Indies board had dithered on the issue.


The West Indies team during the fourth ODI against India in Dharamsala. (Keshav Singh/HT Photo)

The curtailment of the tour is likely to hit the West Indies board and players hard. While India may call off the reciprocal tour of West Indies, many Caribbean players could be boycotted by their IPL teams.

“We (BCCI) will surely file a complaint with the ICC. I personally believe the BCCI should also decide on West Indies players’ participation in the IPL. If they had trouble with their board they shouldn’t have come to India. The board will also rethink on future tours and fixtures with West Indies,” said BCCI joint secretary Anurag Thakur.

In a sharp statement, the BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel said, “The withdrawal gives little thought to the future of the game, the players and the long standing relations between the BCCI and the WICB. The BCCI will pursue all options available to protect its rights, whilst seeking appropriate action from the ICC to ensure that its interests and those of the game at large will not suffer any damage due to such acts of indiscretion.”

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