New Delhi: Legendary West Indies all-rounder Sir Garry Sobers has blamed the Indian Premier League (IPL) as one of the reasons behind the current state of West Indies cricket.
Widely regarded as the game's finest all-rounder, Sobers said that the Windies players aren't willing to perform well in Tests as they want to perform in the cash-rich tournament.
"I believe that a lot of West Indian players today, won't to make Test cricket and do well because the IPL is just around the corner and they can go there. That is not going to develop a country, that is not going to bring the country back to the stardom that it used to be because as soon as they develop, and they go there, they are gone too," said Sobers during a news conference in Sri Lanka.
The 79-year-old even broke down at the conference and said that it hurts to see the current state where player don't prioritise playing for the country.
"Judging for myself, my whole obligation was to West Indies cricket. As I have always said, I have never made a run for me. I have always played for the West Indies team. It was such a pleasure and joy to be able to do what I did. Records meant nothing. The team was important. I don't think we have that kind of person today. We might have them in different countries, we might have them in Sri Lanka, in England, in Australia, but I don't think we have that kind of person in West Indies cricket any more who is quite prepared to play and to give it everything to their country. And that hurts," he said.
West Indies are currently ranked eighth in the ICC Test rankings out of ten Test playing nations.
In his fabulous career, Sobers represented West Indies in 93 Tests scoring 8,032 runs at an average of 57.78 and taking 235 wickets at 34.03.