The Art of War




After the adrenaline of qualifying for the 2003 World Cup, what now?

It seems to me that the elements of preparation do exist. We have an Under-19 team, efforts are being made to place an Under-23 team in the Toronto and District Premier league and there are many individuals and clubs who are quite ardent about junior development. Quite plainly lacking here is the visibility of a long-term plan in the public eye to bring these variant parts together to a potent viable force.

Many criticisms being about the quality of the players; undoubtedly this will always exist. Would you select a batsman, bowler or all rounder? These are never ending arguments. To put some end to this, I would like to see is the skeleton of a long-term plan, from the administration, to bring forward our latent talents. Does it not stand to reason that if there are concerns over who makes our National Team, then we have talented players lurking in the shadows waiting to be discovered?

The case for selection is a tenuous one and moreso because of the apparent lack of professionalism by certain administrators. Immediately what comes to mind is the lack of a physiotherapist for the Under 19 World Cup, and by all accounts it appears that the senior Americaís cup team will also be so lacking.

In the few paragraphs above I have outlined the elements of poor strategic planning.I am well aware that there are individuals who are well qualified and able to train a team to international standard but without the appropriate schema, they are useless.

Imagine for a moment that you have an army with highly skilled soldiers trying to achieve a goal, and you merely rush your troops to the front without first:

  • Planning the troop movements
  • Allocating your resources to maximize your gains
  • Activating and mobilizing your reserves
  • Having public support and faith in the central command
  • Examining the consequences of loss/victory.

Failure is then assured.True, there may be heroic individuals standing out but overall the operation will be a loss. I can see in the overall picture of Canadian Cricket that the Generals are perhaps more concerned with appearances rather than results.

My friends, we are a fledgling country in the world of Cricket. We should accept that we going to have a long and bloody fight to achieve recognition. However, this should serve to provide our juniors with the steel they need to hold the line. Yet, this cannot be achieved without a strong, centralized plan. I am leery that such a plan exists. If it does then the administration is a little shoddy.

As I have mentioned in my previous writing. The resources do exist in our country but for reasons unknown they are not harnessed. Argue that we have short summers, but the days are long. Etobicoke hosts the only indoor training facility in Canada, while this training is not enough for developing ODI players but I see a man who, in his efforts did something to raise our internal standards rather than merely ruminating about it.

The building blocks are there. We have to use them. To complicate matters further, within 15 minutes drive from my home there exists: 10 high school athletic fields, 5 professional standard gyms, kilometers of cross country trails and 1 cricket club housed on a decent pitch.So, with all those facilities within a short distance, can anyone truly say we cannot develop competitive athletes?

My friends let us take full advantage of this. Let us make our opinions known that we will no longer stand by and watch as haphazard planning further embarrasses the nation. We must drive towards professionalism, train and encourage our youths and above all, we must not give up. This is our goal and nothing must stop us from reaching it.


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