Should Cameron’s disrespect matter? ICC Chairman vote should be about issues, not favourites

By August 21, 2020
CWI President Ricky Skerrit (left) and former CWI President Dave Cameron. CWI President Ricky Skerrit (left) and former CWI President Dave Cameron.

I’ve never been a fan of politics.

The term has a number of definitions and I abhor involvement in any of the variations.

Former Cricket West Indies boss, Dave Cameron, is now in the thick of a political fight he is not likely to win because he, like myself, may not be a fan of any of the definitions either and has not played the game well.

The first definition of politics is basic. It speaks simply to activities associated with the governance of a body, area, country, whatever.

That would suggest that part of being in a leadership role (governance), is being an effective politician.

But politics also speaks to views. Your views on governance are your politics.

Whenever your politics aren’t popular, you had better find a way to massage them into a room.

Dave Cameron believed Cricket West Indies should be run like a business. He was well on his way to achieving that when he was ousted, but his politics and approach to seeing them through, meant he alienated many along the way.

Included in that alienation were heads of government in the West Indies as well as the current CWI board.

Now Cameron wants to run for International Cricket Council (ICC) Chairman and on the face of it, it looks like the former CWI president is missing the power he once wielded and seeks a way back.

However, an aspect of his politics that has gone unchallenged, even while he was president of the CWI, is his wish to see an end to the ‘triopoly’ in world cricket.

Cameron has made that issue the lynchpin of his argument for a seat at the head of the table.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), and Cricket Australia (CA), dominate world cricket and all policies at the ICC level, including those involved with financial remuneration, seem to favour this big three.

It is no wonder then, that the frontrunners to replace Shashank Manohar hail from two of the three powers. Saurav Ganguly is president of the BCCI and Colin Graves, the man touted as favourite for the quasi-vacant role, Colin Graves, is a former ECB boss.

Here is where I part ways with politics. Well, we were never going in the same direction really.

Cameron would like the support of the CWI to run for ICC Chairman and while the organisation has not given a response one way or the other, it is largely expected that he will not get it.

Now the CWI board has had its issues with Cameron’s leadership style, with maybe his policies, but and this is a big but - Cameron represents the only chance for small teams like the West Indies to have their interests represented at the highest level.

There is no doubt that Cameron has a point, particularly in respect to the division of money from television rights. The big three, granted they provide the biggest audiences, corner a large part of that market and the ensuing imbalance makes it difficult for smaller nations to invest in their cricket and advance to the lofty heights of the big three, creating ‘forever minnows’.

Here is my question. Do you play politics ahead of issues, especially if that issue is as important to the future of cricket as it is?

Outspoken former West Indies batsman Philo Wallace has said Cameron’s conundrum is one of his own making, and he may be right.

Blessed or cursed with an incredible self-belief, Cameron comes across as arrogant, irreverent, and maybe a little despotic.

It cost him the presidency of the CWI but I don’t believe like Wallace does, that “Dave Cameron should just tell himself ‘I’ve run West Indies cricket for six years' and just leave it out and just be an observer now, because going up for the ICC job and looking for the West Indies support, it can’t work.”

I believe it should still be workable because what is best for West Indies cricket should be at the forefront of the minds of CWI president Ricky Skerritt and all the members of the board.

Therefore, Cameron’s transgressions should be considered water under the bridge in the wake of a bigger fight.

“It’s like trying to get a dumpling up a hill. Unfortunately, he isn’t going to get the support of Cricket West Indies and we all know it.  It’s very sad that a former president has come to this, a former president of West Indies cricket, but sometimes the way that you rule comes back to bite you, there is something called karma…he disrespected leaders and prime ministers in the region and that cannot work,” Wallace had said.

But I have no time for politics, petty grievances or Karma.

I do have time for a stronger West Indies cricket, whether or not I like the person who helps that process along.

Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

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