Satellite John – “We Played Cricket For Love”

Our friend Satellite John wrote the following comment on one of our articles. We think his words deserve a wider audience….

Here is the beginning of an interesting article on Cricinfo…

Daan van Bunge: is his retirement a sign of things to come?Amid all the World Cup headlines, one piece of news from Holland understandably slipped under the radar. Daan van Bunge, who is destined to be forever introduced as the man who Herschelle Gibbs smashed for six sixes in an over, announced that he was retiring from international cricket.

In itself, that’s not earth-shattering news. He is just one of many players who will choose to bow out after the game’s biggest tournament. The difference is that van Bunge is 24, talented, and represents the future for Netherlands cricket.

The reason he gave for his decision was that he could not commit the necessary time to play for his country as well as pursue a full-time job. That should set alarm bells ringing across all the Associates and within the offices of the ICC. There is a real danger that as the demands on part-time cricketers increase, more will decide that balancing those with other aspects of their lives is not practical.

This is the essence of what has happened with WI Cricket.

West Indies is not a country, it certainly is not in the opinion of Prof. Beckles “a nation imagined”. Even if it were, the collective GDPs of all of the countries cannot compare with India, Pakistan, South Africa or Australia.

These larger countries have the wherewithal to pump large sums into sport we do not.

We were great at cricket in the past because we played for the love of the game. It was an art form for us.

Cricket is no longer a game, or a sport we play for love.

It is all about money. We cannot compete in this game.

We need to realise that cricket has developed into something which is different from the sport at which we excelled long ago …….. and also we have developed into people who are different to those who played for love, ……. long, long ago.

Maybe we should just accept this and move on, with or without cricket.

Our leaders and the ICC have actually done us a favour. They have provided the fiasco which can but only open our eyes.

…. we’ll be paying for it for years, but at least now, unless we are complete idiots, the penny will have dropped and we will know we have to make our way in this world on our own.

Up till now, we have been taken for a ride by people who we believed had our interests at heart.

It is time to wake up!!



Filed under Barbados, Cricket

10 responses to “Satellite John – “We Played Cricket For Love”

  1. Rumplestilskin

    I agree to an extent, nevertheless do you remember that when Sri Lanka first won the World Cup the team was made up of doctors, lawyers, engineers etc? i.e. part-timers?

    Success in CWC is also about the ability to analyse and strategise along with boundless determination, Bangladesh and Ireland being examples of that last.

    And yes, LOVE for playing which we seem to have lost.

  2. GrimReality

    Yeah yeah…things change.
    That was Then, this is Now.
    Deal with it.

    ALL Sports have now become money-spinners.
    You want cricket for Fun? I’ll meet you at the beach.
    I got the bring the ball.

  3. Anonymous

    those who are idealistic, set themselves up for disappointment in today’s cruel world

  4. BFP

    Better to be disappointed than to take the soma and say “everything be fine”.

    We will continue to fight, Anonymous… and that includes corruption of cricket, culture and our political system.

    IF we ever allow the ICC into the West Indies again, it will be on the people’s terms, and not terms as dictated by the ICC and agreed to by corrupt and/or stupid politicians.

  5. John

    April 15th, 2007 at 11:30 am
    those who are idealistic, set themselves up for disappointment in today’s cruel world

    It was a long time coming, but I stopped being idealistic about WI cricket when Lara and Hooper struck for pay on the way to South Africa.

    Along the way there was Richie Richardson’s famous comment about “just another game” 1994 or thereabouts which raised the flags for me, and the arrogance we begun to display when we had been on top for a long while.

    Since then, it has been all about money ….. totally utterly boring and borish, and not worth the emotional investment which I made freely when I watched and identified with the West Indies team totally enjoying their cricket, …. and totally in love with it.

    I really feel the time has long past when we should move on from our emotional and financial commitment to cricket and try to find what it is in this world that we love doing.

    I’ll miss it, …. but it won’t kill me!!

    It is more troubling for me to watch the poor imitations of the true West Indies Team which have been repeatedly foisted on me as representative of what went on in the Caribbean a long time ago.

    …. but it ain’t going to kill me!!

    For those great West Indians who gave their all to the game I can only say this set must be another embarrassment.

    …….. and they don’t even seem to have a clue!!

  6. Yardbroom

    There was a time when it meant so much to wear the maroon cap of West Indies and players wore it with pride.

    My “emotional ” attachment to West Indies cricket was extinguished when holed up in a London Hotel the team refused to tour South Africa, as a result Nelson Mandella begged them to tour – they refused the great man, because the money offered was not enough, they eventually did go, when the price was right – and were thrashed.

    I still want them to win and follow their fortunes, but the “emotional” attachment has been snuffed out, money got in the way.

  7. David

    Yes Yardbroom, remember that as the time when it was (I think) Ambrose who injured himself on the plane, being held back by Walsh, while attacking Lara for his self-centred attitudes towards the West Indies, and couldn’t play as a result?

    Recall the interplay of West Indian culture and the words of cricket. Also the three things never to discuss: religion, politics….and cricket!

    John I agree it wouldn’t kill me, I would certainly miss it a great deal. Prof Dean Beckles will certainly have a close think about WI cricket and the future of politics over the next 12 months. It is important for us to understand the context of where we are going in relation to the context of cricket.

    Where are we going, and will it be good? It is very difficult to foresee.

    Cricket in the West Indies is a parable.

  8. Jerome Hinds


    I think the incident involved Jimmy Adams who curiously cut his hand with a bread knife while on board the plane….!

  9. David

    Yes, remembering better now. Thanks.

  10. double negative

    Cricket has become too complicated, money has a way of doing that. Admin problems exist,yes, but problems, like too many players in the WI team, are permanent fixtures.
    The heart of the matter however is the upside down pyramid of WI Cricket. Unlike our glory days, it is now watched, appreciated, and paid for from the top down, and having no suitable foundation must topple. If this can be reversed, WI will rise again.