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Hemp is still the man to lead Bermuda, says former top executive

Former Bermuda Cricket Board (BCB) executive Gary Fray has slammed those who have called for David Hemp to be sacked as the Island’s senior national captain.

Hemp’s captaincy has come under scrutiny lately from some of his team-mates who would rather be led by someone they can relate to on a more personal level.

It is also understood that disgruntled national team players object to having to prepare for overseas competition in the absence of their captain who resides in the UK.

However, in a no holds barred interview with this newspaper, Fray threw his weight firmly behind Hemp and lashed out at the batsman’s critics.

“At this present time I think Hemp is the man to lead us with the experience he has,” said the elder brother of BCB president Lloyd Fray. “The game today is very tactical and you really have to know what you are doing and I think Hemp has that experience and knowledge that hopefully he will pass on to a local, providing they are up to par.”

Fray said national squad players should channel their energy on playing instead of concerning themselves with administrative matters.

“The players should concentrate on playing and making a one hundred percent commitment and leave the administration to the administrators,” he added. “It’s too much of the players interfering with the administrative side of things and they are not playing the game of cricket.

“The last few tours we have taken out of here have been an embarrassment to this country and these players need to settle down and play the game of cricket and leave other things alone.”

Fray attributes the gradual decline in local standards to undisciplined players and blames the lack of discipline so prevalent today to clubs’ failure to impose sanctions whenever their players break the rules.

“Last year an incident happened at an East End club prior to a match and the altercation was separated by both coaches and then about a month or so later the same two teams met and a similar altercation occurred,” he said. “But in the meantime between those four to six weeks both clubs did nothing about the players and that should have been dealt with internally as opposed to throwing it back to the national body, which is the BCB.”

Fray said clubs must do their part in ridding the game of antisocial behaviour.

“It’s not all about winning ... it’s about discipline and having respect for one another and it’s time for the clubs to put their foot down,” he added. “I’m sure the coaches know who these individuals are and they need to get rid of them because we have other young players that are willing to play the game.

“If this antisocial behaviour continues the young players are going to get discouraged and then there is going to be more people not playing the game only because the clubs are not taking the initiative to stamp out this behaviour.”

The former Somerset Cup Match all-rounder also took issue with senior national cricketers who do not give their all to their country.

“All they are doing is playing us and the community is getting tired of this,” he said. “It’s too much of these senior players taking things for granted and they are not one hundred percent fit.

“If these players are not committed then we don’t need them. I say let’s go with the young people that are committed.”

Fray also wants to see the open cricket format reintroduced to the domestic schedule to help players develop into better cricketers.

“I think the Board should reconsider and go back to open cricket because we need to go back to the basics,” he said. “In order to develop players in general you need to have the open format of cricket.”

Bermuda captain David Hemp

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Published February 09, 2012 at 1:00 am (Updated February 09, 2012 at 7:47 am)

Hemp is still the man to lead Bermuda, says former top executive

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