Suspended West Indies head coach Trinidadian Phil Simmons will know his fate next week after he meets with a West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) human resource panel to discuss controversial comments he made about the selection of the West Indies team to tour Sri Lanka later this month.
Simmons told the media in Barbados last week that the selection process regarding the one-day team had been influenced by “interference from outside” and as a result, the best side had not been chosen for the three-match series against Sri Lanka.
WICB Chief Executive Officer Michael Muirhead said Simmons had been called to answer “breaches of confidentiality and bringing West Indies Cricket Board into disrepute.” What has happened with Phil Simmons is most unfortunate. Rest assured he has not been fired. He has been called to answer breaches of confidentiality and bringing West Indies Cricket Board into disrepute,” Muirhead said.
“He will be given a fair hearing by a panel and a decision will be made within the boundaries of our own internal human resources policy. The matter will be dealt with in an expeditious manner and it is our intention to have a decision within the next seven working days,” he said.
Following a training camp in Barbados in preparation for the Sri Lanka Test tour, Simmons spoke about the omission of Trinidadian all-rounders Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard from the One-Day Internation side, he told journalists he and the chairman of selectors, Clive Lloyd, had voted in favor for the two cricketers’ re-inclusion, but the three remaining members of the selection panel had voted against.
Simmons said there is too much interference from outside and it’s disappointing “for me to know that in any aspect of life… people would use their position to get people into a squad or in this case, get people left out of a squad,” an irate Simmons said.
Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell — chairman of CARICOM’s Sub Committee on Cricket Governance — commenting on the issue labelled the claims as “disturbing” and said the selection panel needed to be “free of interference, fear, or favor.”
Simmons has since apologized to all for his recent public statements.