KINGSTON, Jamaica – West Indies Cricket Board president, Dave Cameron, has backed the women’s side to easily qualify for next year’s World Cup in England, despite their recent series loss to the hosts in the Caribbean.
Cameron told Line and Length Network even though he believed the Stafanie Taylor-led unit would secure automatic qualification, if they did not, a place in the eight-team tournament was still virtually assured.
“I think they will qualify easily,” Cameron said.
“And again, it’s a ten-team [qualifying] tournament, there are eight teams playing now in the Women’s Championship so I think we’ll qualify but if we don’t automatically qualify then I can’t see us missing out on the World Cup.
“I think they are very relaxed in their approach right now.”
West Indies Women currently sit third in the ICC Women’s Championship, the ongoing competition which will determine the four automatic qualifiers for the 50-overs World Cup which runs from June 26 to July 23, 2017.
The remaining four spots will be determined by a 10-team qualifier in February next year.
West Indies Women were well below their best in the recent England series, winning just one of the three Women’s Championship games and earning two points, as they went down 3-2 in the One-Day International series.
However, Cameron pointed out that with a structure now in place to ensure long term development of the side, success in the future would be guaranteed.
“I’m very, very delighted with the women’s cricket. I think we always had talent, everybody knew that,” the region’s top administrator said.
“And when you look at persons like Dorothy Hobson (former West Indies player) today, they didn’t get the opportunity to play as much cricket and you’re seeing the difference now.
“We have a structured programme. The ladies are now off to play in India so every year they have a minimum of 12 games and that makes a huge difference to the performance.”
The WICB announced last month it would give players a pay hike and also increase the number of retainer contracts from 11 to 15, a move Cameron believes will be instrumental in motivating the side.
“I’m very happy with where they are. We now have 15 of them retained so I think that will also boost their confidence,” he noted. “I’m looking forward to them winning the World Cup next year actually.”
West Indies Women, the reigning Twenty20 World champions, will tour India for three ODIs and three T20s next month.