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Curb coach's power, let Lara have more say on team selection:Roberts

Written by: Staff

St John's, Antigua, June 7 (UNI) Former bowling great Andy Roberts is of the view that West Indies coach Bennett King has too much power as the head coach and felt captain Brian Lara should have more say on team selection.

Asked to comment on whether he felt Australian King, who has been in the job for 19 months had too much say on selection matters, Roberts responded: "I think so." ''Being a former coach we never had a quarter or one tenth of the amount of power Bennett has. He negotiated that, so be it. But if he wants that and I know what I want for my cricketers, I am not going to go along with that,'' Roberts said on the CMC CricketPlus programme.

''I think that the coach needs to have the power to drop a player but he mustn't have absolute power over the chairman of selectors,'' he added.

He also felt that Lara should have more say on team selection even though he felt the southpaw, in his third stint as skipper, is far more assertive than his predecessor Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

One of the outstanding fast bowlers of the 1970s and '80s, Roberts also questioned the selection process.

''I do not know how we choose teams. I don't know what criteria we use. I don't know whether we just look for players who are currently playing or players who have played a couple months ago but for one reason or another, they are not actually involved in one form of cricket or another,'' he said.

He also had objection to West Indies Cricket Board's (WICB) Australian-style functioning which designates Joey Carew as convenor of the selection panel while King is the Chairman.

''I don't know who arrived at that. To be honest I don't. A system may work well in Australia but not necessarily work in the West Indies,'' Roberts said.

''We have our own culture. We did not get to the top of world cricket by not knowing what we were doing. But it seems to me that our administrators believe that we do not know what we are doing.

''If I have a chairman (now convenor) of selectors, the chairman of selectors must be involved in picking one to 11, not 14, and he must be chairman. Otherwise why do we have him? What is he there for - just to convene meetings?'' he said.


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