Ian Bishop told not one but 10 mistakes of West Indies, the team has become hollow in the last decade

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Harare: The ‘continuing decline’ of West Indies cricket has reminded Ian Bishop of giants of the past who could not keep up with the times and never regained their former glory. The former pacer is as disappointed as any other Caribbean cricket fan after two-time former champions West Indies missed out on a World Cup berth for the first time in 48 years with a humiliating World Cup qualifier defeat against Scotland. Bishop believes that it would be wrong to point fingers at the current generation of West Indies players as the downfall started a long time ago. Bishop told ‘ESPN Cricinfo’, ‘Yes, it has been a continuous downfall. I have always said that it is premature for the current players. We haven’t played consistently good ODI cricket against top nations in probably a decade. After being champions twice, the performance of the T20 team also declined.

Bishop, who took 161 Test and 118 ODI wickets for the West Indies, believes that having no ‘vision’ is one of the biggest reasons for reaching this position. “Like there were some big companies that were at the top at one point but then I think they went out of business maybe because of lack of vision or whatever you call it,” Bishop said. Same happened with (two-time world champions) West Indies who popularized ODI cricket.

Bishop made it clear that even if the West Indies team manages to make a comeback at the top level, it will not be as dominant as it was four or three decades ago and the reason is not just related to cricket. “We will never be able to dominate like we did in the 1980s and the first half of the 1990s,” he said. I think other teams around the world are very good. We have serious economic challenges in the Caribbean that have to be looked at by authorities around the world.

This former cricketer said, ‘But I think we will have a chance to do better next time. Take the example of Zimbabwe, the troubles they faced and how well they have done in this tournament now. Bishop appealed to the cricketers to be practical. He said, ‘I think these are different times. The inspiration is different now compared to what inspired Sir Vivian Richards, Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes and Clive Lloyd and I accept that.

Bishop said, “If it is financially and economically involved, then we have to accept it and give experience and create a platform so that players can definitely be attracted towards it.”

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