A day after Marlon Samuels, West indies’ leading run scorer in the series against India, had said that he was not involved in the decision of the team of pulling out of India tour, Dwayne Bravo, captain of the West Indies ODI team said that all correspondences sent and decisions taken by the squad in India was “in concert with all of the members of the squad” and that he was nominated by the other members of the team to take the lead on behalf of the players on the tour.
Bravo also retorted to the claims made by Samulels in a media report where he said, “[Samuels] contributed to the discussions held and indicated clearly, at that time, that he would stand with any decision taken by the team.”
The team decided to withdraw from the ongoing tour in India after a tussle with the Wavell Hinds-led West Indies Players Association (WIPA) over the new terms of the recently negotiated Collective Bargaining Agreement, which results in a drastic reduction in players earnings.
Bravo’s letter comes after many media reports, which suggested that he was majorly involved in the pull out decision. “Much of the reporting on this situation seems to be concentrating primarily on me and not on the fact that the action taken was in concert with all of the members of the squad,” the allrounder was quoted as saying by Trinidad and Tobago Express.
“Only of late it appears that the action was taken by all but one of the WI squad in India,” he added, making reference to Samuel’s recent comments. “I wish to state for the record that all correspondence sent and decisions taken were with the full agreement and consent of the players on tour including the current Test captain Mr Denesh Ramdin and the T/20 captain Mr Darren Sammy,” Bravo added.
“It was agreed that someone needed to correspond with WIPA after we were presented with the match/tour contract in India when it became evident that the terms and conditions were very different from what we were accustomed to and expected. The team members met and I, as captain, was nominated and accepted the responsibility to correspond on behalf of the players on tour and I will continue to do so as designated,” he explained.
Focusing on Samuels, Bravo wrote: “I note the comments attributed to Mr Marlon Samuels from media reports and wish to state that Mr Samuels was invited to and did attend the majority of meetings with the players on tour. We extended an invitation to Mr Marlon Samuels with the full knowledge that he is not a member of WIPA but was an interested party. Mr Samuels contributed vigorously to the discussions held and indicated clearly, at that time, that he would stand with any decision taken by the team. I am therefore shocked to see the statements, if true, that have been attributed to Mr Samuels,” Bravo explained.
He also noted that while the players in the squad are grateful for the “tremendous support and understanding” shown by their colleagues, friends and fans around the world, “We recognise that a few have attempted to put the blame squarely on the players without the full knowledge of the facts.”
He said it was ‘regrettable’ since a few persons are making statements without knowing all the relevant facts. “In time we believe all the facts will come to light,” Bravo added.
“We do not wish to make any further statements on this matter since the players on tour (except Mr Samuels) with some additional players who did not tour India have appointed Counsel to represent them in this matter. We look forward to a speedy resolution and that our concerns, and that of all players including the first class players, are addressed in a satisfactory and timely manner,” the letter concluded.