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Old 12-10-2012, 02:12 AM   #20
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Default Re: why there WILL be a pacific island heavyweight world champ, soon.

Originally Posted by dawsosj View Post
sally there are ****all people from the west indies in the nba
i knew this, but you didnt...
So what has all this got to do with cricket? In one sense the same as it has to do with the decline in colliery bands in Britain or jazz in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina: decimate an economic base and the culture it helped produce will soon follow. Young aspirant sports players in the Caribbean are now more likely to be attracted by basketball (which could earn them a scholarship to an American university) or football, which could pay millions.
"Twenty-five years ago, cricket was the only avenue anyone had to be recognised. The West Indian team represented international s****om for any youngster," Lara said a few years ago. "It still does [but now] there are a lot more distractions and more avenues."
Such economic realities are buttressed by the cultural effect of cable television piping in the latest international sporting superstars plying their trade. Bubba's, a sports bar in the south of Barbados, was packed with young locals in Manchester United shirts watching the US all-star basketball game beamed live from Las Vegas. Earlier that morning, at the Lucky Horseshoe down the road, there was Premiership football. And although it may be 24C outside, that doesn't stop sports enthusiasts watching ice hockey, if that's what's on.
I can see the changes in my own family. My Uncle Michael is still a cricket coach at primary school level there. He says the enthusiasm remains, but the infrastructure to mould it is decaying. Meanwhile two of my cousins play basketball and another is a regional squash champion. They'll watch cricket, but they neither follow it nor play it. "When you let people know how much Shaq gets for basketball," says Michael, "and how much Beckham gets to go to the US, it's not that surprising that cricket struggles to compete."
"I think we are too influenced by American culture," argues Walcott. "Everything now has to be quick and fast. Cricket is a slow game."
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