Sunday 8 December, 2019

Pollard: CWI attempts to paint us as money hungry mercenaries

Sunil Narine (left) and Kieron Pollard.

Sunil Narine (left) and Kieron Pollard.

West Indies and Trinidad and Tobago all-rounder Kieron Pollard has accused Cricket West Indies (CWI) and the selection panel of putting the players in a bad light due to poor communication.

Pollard was one of four players to opt out of representing the region in the World Cup qualifiers in March, the others being Sunil Narine and Darren Bravo, also of Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaican Andre Russell.

According to a release issued by CWI the players claimed the tournament clashed with their participation in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).  Pollard, however, insists the issue was more complex as he was plagued by uncertainty surrounding his future listed as a major concern.

"Despite performing well in the 2016 tri-series, when I was handed a recall, where the team got to the final, for the next series in Dubai, Denesh Ramdin and I were dropped, with selectors saying I showed no 'commitment to batting'," Pollard told Cricbuzz.

"Now, after only playing two of the 11 West Indies ODI series since the 2015 World Cup, suddenly after months of either zero or limited communication about my ODI future, you (selectors) want me to drop everything and play qualifiers,” he added.

"These are the ridiculous situations they consistently put players in, then they go to media with the clear attempt to paint us as money hungry mercenaries and (say that we are) not committed to West Indies cricket."

Pollard was also taken aback by what he claims was the board’s tardiness in contacting players to participate in the qualifiers which he insists was done in January and well after his PSL contract was secured. 

The all-rounder claims he originally planned to play the Super50 but later withdrew after hearing of a stipulation that Super50 players can only be replaced for the season if they are in squads if they are being called up for West Indies duty.

“All I said was I can't play Super50. This clearly ruled me out of being chosen for the qualifiers. But, two weeks later (there were) big headlines questioning our commitment," added Pollard.

"He (Browne) didn't say 'you can't play full Super50, fine, let's talk about maybe playing a few games. You are making a dollar there, (but) we need you for qualifiers here. Make a suggestion,” he added.

"But no, these guys want to use the cricketers, pick and drop us when they want. My choice to get all these (T20 Leagues) contracts was a meticulous process for the last six months in response to the board's communication or lack thereof."

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