There wasn’t much of a honeymoon period for Richard Pybus. No sooner had he been announced as West Indies’ interim head coach – even before he had been announced, really – the criticism started to flow. And if that was, in part, due to an allegation that due process had not been followed in making the appointment – an allegation rejected by CWI – it was also down to his history.
Whether Pybus likes it or not, he brings baggage to the role. Yes, his experience, both as a coach and in the region, is undeniable. But so is the fact that he was at the center of the dispute that saw West Indies abandon their 2014 tour of India. As a result, several prominent figures in Caribbean cricket are skeptical about him and seem unafraid to vocalize those views. And, as Peter Moores found in his second stint as England coach, such baggage can drag a man down pretty quickly if results don’t go his way.
One of the more vocal critics of Pybus’ appointment has been former captain Darren Sammy. He responded to a CWI press release that referred to Pybus as “the architect of the West Indies trifecta of 2016 World Cup titles” – the men’s World T20, the women’s World T20 and the Under-19 World Cup – by saying the teams won “in spite” of him, not because of him.