Cameron calls for united CWI as Shallow takes reins after Heaven pull-out
CAMERON... it’s an organisation already divided by water, by history... then you have a boardroom that’s divided and you tell the players to play for a united nation (Photo: Observer file)

Former Cricket West Indies (CWI) President Whycliffe "Dave" Cameron is calling for unity among the territorial boards as Vincentian Dr Kishore Shallow gets ready to take charge of the regional governing body.

Shallow's path was cleared on Friday after Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) boss Wilford "Billy" Heaven announced his withdrawal from the CWI presidential race set for Antigua on March 25.

Ricky Skerritt, who has led the CWI since he defeated Cameron at the polls in 2019, had declared his intention to leave the post at the end of consecutive two-year terms.

"Shallow has opposition, clearly, because other people nominated Billy," said Cameron on Friday, "but he needs to find a way to ensure that he brings all these other boards on-board.

CAMERON...he (Shallow) needs to find a way to get everybody on board and buy into his vision (Photo: Joseph Wellington)

"Don't try to alienate them, but bring them on-board to ensure that he can improve West Indies cricket. He needs to find a way to get everybody on board and buy into his vision," the former CWI boss told the Jamaica Observer.

"I'm not saying either of them [Heaven or Shallow] is the person to take us forward, but I'm saying we're six small territories, five million people. So, you can't be fighting about that, then you end up with an organisation… in which every day you go inside there [board meetings] fighting with two or three boards because they didn't believe you should have been there," he said in an apparent dig at how a president is chosen.

"It's an organisation already divided by water, by history, we play football against each other, but then you have a boardroom that's divided and you tell the players to play for a united nation," the Jamaican explained.

Cameron, who headed West Indies cricket from 2013 to 2019, said he had been able to pull the territorial boards together for his first two two-year terms before fractures emerged.

"…That person [CWI president] has to spend time to galvanise, to get the support of everybody behind him. I was able to do that for two terms and then all of a sudden some divisions were created and caused problems," he said.

Both the Vincentian Shallow, the incumbent CWI vice-president, and the Jamaican Heaven, a member of the regional cricket's board of directors, had been nominated for the top job ahead of the deadline in February.

Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board (TTCB) President Azim Bassarath is the lone nominee for the post of vice-president.

The Observer tried, without success, to contact Heaven on Friday.

In a media release he did not detail the reason for withdrawing his candidacy, but indicated dissatisfaction with the CWI governance structure.

"My objective is to serve the greater good of West Indies cricket, but unfortunately, this is not likely to be achieved if some fundamental changes are not made to the constitution and the existing rule of governance," he noted.

Heaven said he remains "fully committed to the development of regional cricket and will continue to serve this purpose".

Heaven had been nominated by the JCA and the Guyana Cricket Board, while Shallow was supported by the Windward Islands Cricket Board and the Leeward Islands Cricket Association.

TTCB and Barbados Cricket Association are the other territories with voting representatives.

Sanjay Myers

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