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Run out Cameron

Published: 
Friday, February 27, 2015

If, somehow, love for our cricket and anger over the machinations of a pompous idiot should trump the shameless horse-trading that passes for WICB politics, and he should get the ignominious run-out he deserves, I have a job for Dave, one for which his tenure as WICB president has perfectly groomed him: with his combination of arrogance and complete disregard for the people he was mandated to protect, Dave should segue seamlessly from WI cricket administration into human trafficking.

Every West Indies cricket supporter should put everything aside—professional and personal challenges, worries about global warning, InstaGramming their friends iPhone pix of what they had for lunch—and spend this weekend trying to think of a new job for soon-to-be-ex-West Indies Cricket Board president, Dave Cameron.

Now don’t get me wrong: I don’t want him to go; I’m a huge Dave Cameron fan. When I’m down, all I have to do to make myself feel better is compare myself to him. Like the Government of T&T, cocaine sprangers, quadriplegics and Donald Trump, all I need is a sidelong glance at Dave to make me feel instantly better about my own life. We all get something wrong occasionally, but Dave is the Zen master of incompetence.

Even by the non-standards of the West Indies Cricket Board, which, over the years, has limboed lower and lower to achieve such monumental firetruckups as sending an overage team halfway around the world to an Under-17 competition, scheduling two matches for the same team on the same day on different firetrucking continents and privately encouraging one of its greatest former players (Viv Richards) to apply for a coaching job it then promptly and publicly denied him because he held no coaching certificate. 

The post-Independence WICB has never had a single day of a half-decent working relationship with the players it was set up to administer, but even within what passes for our cricket administration, Dave Cameron stands out as bumbling—and, to my delight, adds huge amounts of unjustifiable arrogance in the bargain.

My Form Three English teacher used to repeat an old Persian proverb to our class: “He who knows and knows not that he knows, is asleep: wake him; he who knows and knows that he knows is a wise man: follow him; he who knows not, and knows that he knows not, is a child: teach him; but he knows not, and knows not that he knows not, is a fool: shun him.” Dave Cameron should have done English with me.

If our Dave had the slightest firetrucking inkling of how he comes across, he would keep his mouth shut, lest anyone find out how hopelessly unsuited he is for the position he holds—instead, he can’t stop running off at the mouth he only opens to change feet.

From the start of a presidency that made West Indies fans nostalgic for Julian Hunte the way Iraqis pine for Saddam Hussein, Dave has walked down the wicket to swing wildly at every ball, and has been caught behind, stumped and run out for duck on every ball—and has simply refused to go back to the pavilion. 

Justice Anthony Lucky’s WICB committee said his decision “to engage Digicel to finance the Kensington Cricket Club renovation was ill-conceived and has cultivated suspicion with respect to improper inducements.” More recently, he was openly, directly and personally responsible for aggravating the standoff leading to the WICB being slapped with a US$42 million compensation claim for the abandoned tour of India last November—and yet he has the cojones to tweet, with a self-pride matching his self-delusion, that “they’ve criticised you...doubted you...lied on you... done all they can do, but the one thing they can’t do is stop you.”

Last week, though, in an admirable effort to convince the world that his ego was bigger than his IQ and when West Indies cricket was at its World Cup lowest after being defeated by Ireland, our Dave retweeted someone else’s tweet—thereby making it the WICB president’s—that Chris Gayle should be forced into retirement; the same Chris Gayle who, this week, smashed World Cup and one-day cricket records to smithereens.

You’ve got to admire stupidity on that colossal scale. Planet Earth has produced only one contender for a more spectacular global village idiot: only the mayor of Toronto manages to firetruck up almost as regularly, publicly and hugely, and, somehow, also holds on to his job.

The optimistic WI cricket fan, then, might be forgiven for thinking that not even Dave can hold on to his job now—especially facing a challenge from Joel Garner, the Big Bird, one of the greatest former players of the great West Indian teams, and a quiet, hardworking and fundamentally decent man. (Of course, a concrete brick would be a more attractive—and more intelligent, and tactful president.)

But, even as I write the plainest truth—Dave Camerons’s unsuitability for and certain inability to hold on to his job—I brace myself for the meeting that will reappoint him, to further depress me about our cricket but, also, to continue to cheer me up by his continuing to destroy whatever he has not ruined of our cricket already. Having beaten West Indies cricket to a pulp, he’ll start beating the pulp; and I’ll look at him and feel better about myself.

If, somehow, love for our cricket and anger over the machinations of a pompous idiot should trump the shameless horse-trading that passes for WICB politics, and he should get the ignominious run-out he deserves, I have a job for Dave, one for which his tenure as WICB president has perfectly groomed him: with his combination of arrogance and complete disregard for the people he was mandated to protect, Dave should segue seamlessly from WI cricket administration into human trafficking.

BC Pires is not getting an invitation to WICB president’s box. E-mail your accusations of overstepping the line to him at [email protected]

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