Cricket West Indies will soon be on the hunt for a head coach of the senior regional team after Australian Stuart Law tendered his resignation from the post with effect from January 2019.
Law’s resignation means he will remain with the Windies team for the upcoming away series against India and Bangladesh. He will then join Middlesex CCC in England in the New Year.
Law, who took over as head coach from Phil Simmons in February 2017, leaves after guiding the Test team to series wins against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh and the ODI team through the ICC World Cup Qualifiers and into the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
Law also oversaw the first West Indies Test Match win in England for 17 years with a five-wicket win at Headingley.
“I have had to make the difficult decision to leave my role of Head Coach with CWI. It has been very enjoyable, and I believe we have made tremendous strides forward as a Team during the past two years,” he said.
“I would like to thank the players, staff and the fans for their support over this period, I have appreciated it greatly. I will be taking a role with Middlesex CCC, which will keep me close to my family, whilst continuing within the cricket family. I wish the players and staff of CWI every success in the future.”
Director of Cricket, Jimmy Adams expressed disappointment with the timing of the resignation.
“While I regret his leaving and the timing of it, I fully understand his reasons, and along with everyone at Cricket West Indies (CWI) want to thank him for his dedication and commitment whilst in the role and wish him the very best of luck at Middlesex,” he said.
Chief Executive, Johnny Grave also expressed his disappointment about Law’s impending departure.
“I am disappointed that Stuart is leaving as I believe that we have made real progress under his leadership,” Grave said.
“I know it was a difficult decision for him and that ultimately the opportunity to work in England, where his family is now based, was a major factor in his decision. We will start the process to appoint a new head coach immediately.
Law is currently in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates preparing the West Indies team for their tour of India. Those preparations have not gone as smoothly as Law would like. He has lamented West Indies’ lack of access to training facilities in India after they were forced to use the ICC Academy in Dubai to begin their preparation for the two-Test series starting next week.
The West Indies have spent the last week training at the stadium and will only travel to India on Wednesday, just days ahead of their two-day tour game against the Indian Cricket Board (BCCI) President’s XI starting Saturday in Vadodara.
Law said the ideal preparation for the squad would have been using India as a training base in the build-up to the series.
“We tried to get into India but we were told there weren’t any places available for us. It would have been nice to be in India. There would have been less travel,” the Australian told Times of India.
“The ICC Global Academy said they had cricket going and thus offered us to come over here. We have to take what we have got. We are enjoying ourselves.”
The BCCI said the lack of available facilities was as a result of fixture congestion, owing to the start of the domestic season.
“We have so many teams this season,” TOI quoted a BCCI spokesman as saying.
“To accommodate them at a time when the domestic season has got underway would always be difficult.”
West Indies opened a two-day practice match against a UAE XI yesterday, racking up 345 for five with left-hander Shimron Hetmyer top-scoring with 60, Shai Hope and Roston Chase both getting 51, and Sunil Ambris, 47.
Law said afterwards the outing had been critical to the squad’s preparation, especially in acclimatising to conditions.
“It was a great hit [on Sunday] for our batsmen in extreme heat,” he said.
“All the batsmen had some valuable time in the middle and our preparation has been excellent so far. The boys are adjusting nicely to the tough conditions.”
The final practice session scheduled for tomorrow has been scrapped, a Windies team statement said today.
West Indies are scheduled to face off with India in the opening Test in Rajkot beginning October 4, before clashing again with the hosts in the final Test in Hyderabad from October 12.
The tourists have not beaten India in a Test series in 16 years and are also without a series win on the subcontinent since the legendary Clive Lloyd’s side triumphed 35 years ago.
Following the Test tour, they clash with India in five One-Day Internationals and three Twenty20 Internationals.