An aggrieved Darren Bravo said late Saturday he planned to “step away just for a bit” following the latest snub by West Indies selectors, which saw him left out of the upcoming One-Day International squad to face England, starting Sunday.
In an emotional post on social media platform Instagram, he said he had “taken some time to ponder and wonder” about his future in West Indies cricket, and while he was not “giving up”, believed a break would be the best move for his career.
He gave no clear indication of the length of the break, however, but said it was proving difficult to continue finding motivation amid the ongoing selection disappointments.
“At this point in my career it’s not easy or should I say it takes a lot to continue to find the energy, the passion, commitment and discipline to be able to perform to the best of my ability and put myself in a position to make my return to international cricket.”
In response to Bravo’s Instagram post, Trinidad and Tobago’s men’s cricket team head coach David Furlonge said he would consult with Bravo today. Furlonge stated: “(I’m) talking to him tomorrow (this) morning. I will be willing to make a comment after that.”
Apart from the senior ODI side, Bravo has not found a place in either the West Indies Academy squad that is playing a home series against Ireland Academy or the West Indies A set-up that is touring South Africa for three unofficial Tests.
“Without any level communication I’ve been left in a very dark place,” he further wrote. “At the moment there’s three teams representing the region in multiple formats/series. That’s approximately 40-45 players and if I can’t be in any of these teams after competing in our regional tournaments and scoring runs, therefore they are basically telling me that the writing is on the wall.
“I’m not giving up but I believe it’s best to step away just for a bit and maybe make some room for a young and upcoming talent. I will end by wishing each and everyone [sic] all the very best. I’ve lived my dream.”
Bravo has played 56 Tests, 122 ODIs and 26 T20Is for West Indies since making his international debut in 2009. While chief selector Desmond Haynes defended his exclusion on the grounds that West Indies were looking to give longer runs to younger batters—given that the next ODI World Cup is four years away, the decision has not gone down well in all quarters.
Bravo’s older brother Dwayne, a former West Indies captain, hit out against the selectors, accusing them of “mistreatment, disrespect and dishonesty towards players.”
Antigua will host the first two ODIs of the West Indies vs England series, on December 3 and 6, before it concludes in Barbados on December 9. The teams are also scheduled to play five T20Is, from December 12 to 21, in Barbados, Grenada and Trinidad.
Bravo, still one of the region’s best players, was overlooked in a 15-man squad for the three ODIs against England, despite gathering a tournament-leading 416 runs at an average of 83 in the recently-concluded Super50 Cup. The 34-year-old, who averages 30 from 122 ODIs, last featured for West Indies 22 months ago. Bravo concluded the statement with the hashtag “age is just a number”.
In response to Bravo’s exclusion in spite of his form, chief selector Haynes last week stated: “Darren has proven not only this year but last year in the Super50 tournament, to be somebody who performs well at this level.
“But we have invested in players like Alick Athanaze and Keacy Carty, and we just figured that in selecting this team, we also had to take into consideration that the World Cup 2027 is something that we’ve got in mind.
“And we believe we’ve invested in these players and believe we should give them the opportunity of playing against a very strong England side.”