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Sir Viv backs the West Indies again

OPINIONS: Sir Viv Richards

SIR VIV RICHARDS has saluted the West Indies team for putting their issues with the players association to one side in order to get on with playing and winning cricket matches.

The Windies had threatened strike action ahead of their one-day international match against India in Kochi, following a bitter dispute with the West Indies Players Association (WIPA.

The team believe they had been ‘hoodwinked’ following recent meetings with the WIPA which led to the signing of a new memorandum of understanding with the WICB, under which the players would suffer a significant pay cut.

So incensed by the underhand way in which they had perceived WIPA representative Wavell Hinds’ actions to be, captain Dwayne Bravo said his team would have no issue with taking ‘appropriate action’.

It was feared that the one day series would not get underway. Richards says it was the right thing for the team to play the game and that in the end "good sense did prevail."

However, the legendary cricketer did question how it was that the very board established to look after the players had let them down so badly.

He told espnCricinfo: “The first thought that came to mind was well here we go again," he said. "I am proud of them (the team). When I say good sense, if for some reason things didn't work out the way they would have liked with WIPA's president Wavell Hinds, they have gone about it in the best way possible.

“With all this stuff going on, I think it was just a marvelous performance. That was the perfect way to reply, beating the defending champions on their home soil in such a convincing manner."

He added: "You would expect the players association to be looking after the interests of the players and also for the development of young cricketers in the region.

“I think there was some argument in the players' association about how things should be panned out in the future. I also believe it shouldn't have gone this far, especially with the guys coming on tour knowing that at some point you had to sign a contract to do so. To play out the way it did wasn't in the best interests of the West Indies moving forward."

The West Indies beat India by 124 runs with Marlon Samuels, producing a standout innings of 126 not out in his first ODI in seven months.

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