West Indies controversy

Grenada – Grenada Prime Minister Keith Mitchell wants to talk to the two telecommunications companies which have interests in the dispute that has engulfed West Indies cricket for six weeks.

Mitchell, who on Wednesday will offer advice to the squabbling West Indies Cricket Board and the West Indies Players Association as mediator, said the Caribbean Community he also heads would seek to bring Cable & Wireless and Digicel to the mediating table in the New Year.

Digicel is the new sponsor of West Indies cricket, but former major sponsor Cable & Wireless has retained a lot of players on individual endorsement deals. The conflict of interest has been a major spark in the clash between the board and players association that has threatened the team’s tour of Australia next month. ‘I think some of the problems that are now emerging can be resolved with a cooling off period envisaged during the holiday and during the tour,’ Mitchell said on Tuesday.

‘We will engage the private sector parties, both Cable & Wireless and Digicel, in the whole question of a final solution to the problems.’

Mitchell will meet with the board and players association on Wednesday and discuss the ruling of Judge Adrian Saunders, the independent arbitrator who has submitted his judgment on the legal aspects of the contract dispute. ‘If we cannot meet physically because of the serious transportation problems we’re facing, I may then have a hookup telephone conversation and offer some constructive solution to ensure at least the tour continues without any disruption whatsoever,’ Mitchell said. ‘The fact is the adjudicator has ruled basically to ensure that there is a specific decision as far as the legal aspect is concerned but we have other aspects to be mindful of.’

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