The West Indies Cricket Board has been issued a ‘please explain’ after its president retweeted a fan’s criticism of out of form opener Chris Gayle.
Gayle, who hasn’t scored a one-day international century in his last 20 matches, scored four from 14 balls against Pakistan on Saturday, prompting a fan to tweet: “Gayle goes… Can’t buy a run. Let’s give him a retirement package … Can’t fail repeatedly and still front up based on reputation”, which WICB president Dave Cameron retweeted.
This left the West Indies Players Association “extremely disturbed”, with Cameron later deleting the tweet and apologising.
No offense intended. Full apologies extended. Rally round the West Indies
— President Cameron (@davec51) February 21, 2015
The WIPA issued the following statement regarding Cameron’s tweet.
"The West Indies Players Association (WIPA) is extremely disturbed by the unacceptable re-tweeting by Mr. Dave Cameron, President of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), of a negative "fan" tweet which was directed at our member Mr. Christopher Gayle," the statement said.
"That Mr. Cameron's re-tweet came in the middle of the West Indies team's critical ICC CWC game against Pakistan renders it even more unacceptable.
"President and CEO of WIPA, Mr Wavell Hinds says, 'We denounce any such behaviour by any official of the WICB in any given circumstance'.
"WIPA has written to the WICB requesting a full explanation."
Tensions flared between the WICB and WIPA after October’s tour of India was abandoned due to a contract dispute, costing the Board of Control for Cricket in India a reported $65 million.
Following the cancelled tour, ODI skipper Dwayne Bravo and allrounder Kieron Pollard were not selected in the West Indies 15-man World Cup squad, with Gayle describing the decision as “ridiculous”.
"How can those two guys not be in the team?” Gayle said after a T20 match against South Africa in January.
"To me it (has) got to be like victimisation when you look at it towards those two guys.
"Come on .. it is just ridiculous ... (it has) really hurt ... just sad.
"We don't have our strongest team without Pollard or Bravo. "It is a really big blow for us to actually lose two key players.
"I don't know what's the history behind it, but it is a ridiculous selection from my point of view ... with two of our biggest players in ODI cricket not involved in the 50-over format and the World Cup."
The West Indies next Cricket World Cup assignment is against Zimbabwe in Canberra tomorrow.