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Chaos In New York Cricket Region

By Sam Sooppersaud

November 10, 2009 | Comments
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. I am your announcer for tonight's program of wrangling. Let me welcome you to the arena, where numerous battles have been fought, with no definitive decisions resolving the ever-going contention.

Jefroy Morrishaw (top) and Krish Prasad (below).

Both fighters are wearing the colors of the New York Cricket Region, with trimmings in the colors of the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA). Standing to my left is Krish Prasad and the Board of Directors of the NY Region of USACA (B of D). To my right is the Chairman of the NY Cricket Region, Jefroy Morrishaw (JM). You may guess, as suggested by the colors worn by both camps that they are all from the same gym, Gym NY Region/USACA. They are competing for the coveted prize, which is....., wait a minute; I see nothing here concerning what is the winners’ prize.

A large portion of the audience shouts "Power, that’s what they’re fighting for, power." I asked for an explanation. Then came the reply. "They’re fighting to see who can wield more power; who can 'call the shots,' who can get their own people in, to do the winner's bidding." Here you have it, ladies and gentlemen. Can't argue with that!

The bell rings. Round 1. The fighters watchfully circle each other. B of D threw the first jab. A left to the chin. "You are not doing the job you were put in to do." JM counters with a jab of his own, "What do you mean I am not doing my job"? A quick left and right from the B of D, " it is required by USACA that each region must call a meeting every quarter. You have not called a meeting in two consecutive quarters." JM counter-punched, "I called the meeting both quarters, but none of you guys showed up." B of D fired a quick fire right to JM's midsection, "you call meetings but have no agendas. We would not waste our time to attend a meeting where no one knows what matters would be discussed." JM, "so don't tell me that I have not called any meeting in two quarters". End of Round 1.

Bell rings. Round 2. The fighters continue to jab and counter-jab, with no knock-out punches being throw. At least not yet. Then, bang. A left from B of D, "Since you took over the chairmanship in 2008, you have not raised any money for the region. If we did not step in and raise some cash the region would not have gotten the funds to send the Under-15 squad to the National Tournament earlier this year." JM lashed back with a left of his own, "I think that whatever funds are raised during my watch should be credited to me and my administration. I participated in that fund-raising drive."

A right uppercut by B of D, "You are abusing your power as chairman of the region. For instance, you suspended (attempted to suspend) the Secretary of the region, Wesley King. He was elected by the region and only that body can remove him." JM threw a weak left which missed its mark, " If people cannot do their job then they will have to be removed." Exactly, fired back B of D. End of Round 2.

The fighters stands in their respective corners and recoup. Bell rings. Third and final round. B of D threw the first series of lefts and rights, "You have the tendency to talk down to people rather that endear yourself to them. You show disdain toward the Board. By your actions you alienate yourself from people. You have an autocratic way of doing things. You run a one man show. We cannot have this any longer.” JM answers the barrage with jabs of his own, "The Board does what it wants to do. They show no respect to me and my input. Many a times I have to make decisions on my own because the Board do not get together when I summon them." Then came the knockout punch, a solid right to JM's head," A motion of no-confidence was made and seconded. After further discussions, the vote was taken. “Motion passed." On the judge’s scorecards it read a decision by unanimous vote 8-1-1.
End of fight.

I have chosen to present this matter to you, the public, in a somewhat laughable manner. After all, isn't that the way in which our cricket administrators seem to go about their responsibilities. Nearly everyone who have followed the administration of cricket on a national, regional, or local level, can enumerate several instances when our sport's elected officials have betrayed our trust in them or acted unjustifiably. Of course, not all of them. There are some very hard working and conscientious ones.

Let's me retrace the Morrishaw affair. He was not present at the meeting at which he was removed. Was he informed that a meeting will be called, and the purpose for which it was called? According to my sources Morrishaw was informed of the meeting and was invited to attend. There is no evidence that he was told that he would face a no-confidence vote. However, Morrishaw did inform the Board of Directors that he had a previously arranged out-of-town engagement and would not be able to attend the meeting. He suggested an alternate date, but this was rejected.

The Board of Directors of the New York Cricket Region is comprised of the presidents of the seven area leagues together with four members-at-large elected by the league presidents. The B of D elects the Chairman of the region. The meeting at which Morrishaw was removed was attended by six league presidents, and the four members-at-large. One league president was unavailable. According to information I received, eight board members voted to remove the Chairman. One member abstained, while a second considered himself ineligible and did not cast a vote on the motion. The sole abstaining member, Marcellus Bailey, stated that he could not, in good conscience, vote for the motion because Morrishaw was not present to "Have his day in court.” The Board at the same meeting appointed Selwyn Caesar as interim Chairman of the NY Region.

Now, let's see what actions were taken by the region's board since Jefroy Morrishaw was removed from office, and Selwyn Caesar took over the reins. In fact, let us take a quick glimpse and see who Caesar is. He is a former Trinidad national pace bowler. He is a former Treasurer of USACA. He has been "one of the boys" for a long time. Was his appointment one of convenience? Just asking! What took place since Caesar took over? Coach Linden Fraser, who has done a yeoman's job as a coach, was removed from his assignment as the coach of the regional team. He was replaced by Zamin Amin, a former USA captain. The manager of the regional team was Dr. Dodson. He was removed and his place taken by Godfrey Mitchell, one of the members-at-large of the region. A 21 year old player, Andre Kirton, was dropped from the regional side and replaced by 43 year old Sudesh Dhaniram. Yes, I would agree that Dhaniram is an exciting player in his own right. It is no secret that Morrishaw, Fraser, and Dodson, do have a good relationship among them. By the same token I must mention that Amin, Caesar, Krish Prasad, Dhaniram, and numerous members of the Board, do enjoy a pleasant social relationship.

I am a writer and thus I endeavor to present the facts, as best as I could, as furnished to me by my very reliable sources. I try not to present any distortions. I ask you, the readers, to read this piece with an objective mind. As stated in the mock boxing match above, the reason for this debacle is the lust by some to grab power. I, as the writer, make no such suggestion or accusation. Also, I feel that something is drastically "not kosher" when a promising 21 year-old is dropped from a side and is replaced by a 43 year old. Is this what it means to look to the future? But, I ask you, the public, do you smell favoritism, nepotism, and/or secularism at work here? What's your opinion? I would like to know. You may send your comments to me at Ssamrajs@verizon.net or call me at (718) 844-7236.

Send your comment


Sudesh Daniram is excellent cricketer,who should captain the USA,mold yongster,motivate them.He is very astute leaders and is fair,he has the ability to take the USA to the next level with youth and some of the senior players.Changes are good gave Zamin a chance,new idea,different approach.Cush and few others should never play for USA.
Posted by Raj B. on Nov. 13th, 2009

Hey Sam,
When I indicated you should keep your day job, it was done in jest. C\'mon man, thought you know better.
I repeat.... Andre Kirton, whom I know very well, is a charismatic personality and a mighty fine cricketer. Do you have a problem with this?
As I do not know too much of what transpired in this most vexing situation, I went to great pains to stay away. However, based on what I do know, some of the characters should be held accountable.
A five man/woman committee should be empowered to investigate this sad, sorry state of affair. And let the chips fall where they may.
Posted by Ray on Nov. 13th, 2009

Ray, I do not have a day job. I gave that up 7 years ago. seriously, I have nothing against Dhaniram. I feel he in one of the most explosive batsman around the NY area today.With the same token, Andrea Kirton is on of our future prospects who have proven himself on the national scene. If we are to build for the future then we have to make sacrifice. If this means leaving out Dhaniram for the younger, then by golly, let\'s do it.
Posted by Sam Sooppersaud on Nov. 11th, 2009

Great article, one of your best.
Posted by Bassett Thompson on Nov. 11th, 2009

Be careful what you wish for, Sam.
Mr. McMahon is looking for a ring announcer for his socalled wrestling extravaganza at Madison Square Garden. You may want to apply. Ha! Ha! I remember quite vividly when the same young man was being \"disciplined\", ostracised (non-selection) by a socalled coach for playing in unauthorised cricket matches.
Andre \'Rusty\' Kirton is a charismatic personality and a mighty fine young cricketer. One of the finest innings I ever saw was authored by the dynamic Sudesh Dhaniram when he single-handedly, well almost, annihilated the Rest of the Caribbean.
I do sincerely hope Selwyn Caesar has a better plan of action to interact with today\'s young cricketers - not the idiotic and moronic and infantile way Hemant Poonoo was treated by some.
Keep your day job, Sam!
Stay well all!

Posted by Ray on Nov. 11th, 2009
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