Sacked West Indies head coach, Richard Pybus, believes he and former Cricket West Indies president, David Cameron, had the right tools and vision to transform the beleaguered Caribbean side into a successful team again.
Breaking his silence for the first time since being removed from the helm of West Indies last April, the controversial Englishman said his early work with the team had the makings of something special and that he had been praised by many for the way the side performed against England earlier this year.
“Of all the sides I have coached around the world, this group was fantastic. We had a very good understanding as a collective group,” Pybus told the Gleaner newspaper here.
“The attitude was right, and we had a mutual respect and belief as to what we wanted to achieve as a whole, and this team was ready to start winning.
“We had some really good guys in our back-room staff, guys such as Vasbert Drakes, Mushtaq Ahmed, Toby Radford, and Esuan Crandon. All these guys did an excellent job. The players responded to them well as most of them are well known around the region.”
He added: “I have had persons tell me that they loved the way the team played in that England series with passion and aggression.
“That is the philosophy that we wanted across the board, and yes, I am disappointed that I was not able to carry on, but that is the nature of a democratic process, and these things do happen.”
Pybus was controversially appointed to lead West Indies for England’s tour of the Caribbean last January and oversaw a 2-1 win in the three-Test series.
The Windies also held England to a 2-2 draw in the three-match One-Day International series before being thrashed 3-0 in the Twenty20 series.
However, once Ricky Skerritt toppled the incumbent Cameron in the CWI presidential elections in March, the new administration sacked the coaching staff, appointing former West Indies captain Floyd Reifer as interim head coach.
Pybus, a former CWI director of cricket, contended the vision established by himself and Cameron had shown signs of bearing fruit.
“Dave Cameron and I set out to formulate a long-term plan, whereby we wanted to lift regional cricket from a semi-professional set-up to a fully professional one, whereby players understand what it takes to play international cricket and can perform consistently once they get to that level,” Pybus explained.
“A number of players had committed to the philosophy and wanted to play for the West Indies, and we were on the right track for long-term continued success.”
Since Pybus’s depature, West Indies have continued their struggles, finishing ninth of 10 teams at the ICC World Cup and failing to win a single match against India in any format, on the Asian side’s just-concluded tour of the Caribbean.
Pybus said it was critical the current Windies coaching staff kept the side motivated despite the losing trend.
“Winning is a methodology that requires doing a lot of homework and preparation. The team has to have the right professional attitude, and the coaches have to find a way to let the team stay positive,” he noted.
“It is a team that wins, and not any one individual, so it’s going to take a collective effort – quality planning coupled with superb execution.”