Celebrating their fantastic victories over India and England to win the World Twenty20 for a second time, Dwayne Bravo may have freely added a couple of more names to his West Indies cricket theme song ‘Champions, Champions, Champions…’
Jonathan Charles, Lendl Simmons and Andre Russell may have found their way into the lilting lyrics after the India match and Marlon Samuels, Samuel Badree and Carlos Brathwaite after the final. At this rate, the lyrics of the song can easily be chopped and added after every victory of theirs!
After his stirring post-victory speech, Darren Sammy has become part of Caribbean cricket folklore. His major contribution for his team is to win the Worle Twenty20 twice. He may not have batted or bowled much and winning 10 tosses in a row to give the side a clear edge in Indian conditions.
After all their dominance of world cricket for over a decade-and-a-half in the 1980s and 90s, West Indies have been the most despised team in the new millennium, both the players and the administrators behaving in an irresponsibly churlish manner.
The selectors made it worse by acquiescing with the board in sacking captains and players for standing up for their legitimate rights. All things put together, they saw to it that the players were divided. Any captain or player trying to resolve the issue was branded a crony of the board.
The problem is that a majority of players in the 2016 champion side are not members of the West Indies Players Association (WIPA) which deals with their board and the key members of the negotiating team are from one country.
How can one explain the downfall of a team that has won twice each the 50-0ver World Cup (1975 and 1979) and the World Twenty20 trophy (2014 and 2016) besides being the only team to win all three ICC tournaments other than India, which also were joint winners of the Champions Trophy with Sri Lanka before winning it outright?
The T20 triumph could not have come at a more critical juncture for the West Indies, at a time they were being reviled by commentators for their uncerebral on field madness, more so after they failed to qualify for the top-eight Champions Trophy next year, thus missing out for the first time playing in any of the three ICC limited-overs tournaments.
The writing was there on the wall when they lost to Ireland in the opening match of the 2015 ODI World Cup. Some of the West Indies greats did not like one bit of the performance of their teams internationally.