Haynes, Sir Learie 'exemplars of the game', says SkerrittTuesday, June 15, 2021
ST JOHN'S, Antigua (CMC) — Cricket West Indies (CWI) President Ricky Skerritt has described legends Desmond Haynes and Sir Learie Constantine as “exemplars” of the game after the pair were inducted into the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Hall of Fame.
Haynes, 65, and the late Sir Learie, a pioneer who featured in West Indies' first-ever Test in 1928, were among 10 inductees announced Sunday, in celebration of Friday's start of the inaugural World Test Championship final between India and New Zealand at Lord's.
“This is another special day in West Indies cricket history as these two exemplars of the wonderful game of cricket, have been honoured globally through the ICC Hall of Fame — true indicators of their performance and their impact,” Skerritt said in a statement.
“Sir Learie Constantine was the quintessential West Indian cricketer — a lively fast bowler, attacking batsman and superb fielder, a man who took to the field on that famous day at Lord's 93 years ago when the West Indies started the challenging but exciting journey as a Test nation.
“He embodied what we as West Indians value most in our players — dedication, commitment and strength of character. After his playing days were over he also made his name as a popular lawyer and politician, with a dedication to serving and improving the lives of others.”
Skerritt continued: “Desmond's cricket career showed early promise as a member of the Barbados Under-19 team. It wasn't long before he shot onto the world stage with a sensational century and never looked back.
“He was an opening batsman and a close-to-the-wicket fielder par excellence, and together with Gordon Greenidge set the standard for how the new ball should be played.
“Out in the middle Desmond was lion-hearted and never surrendered no matter the circumstances. As an integral and valued member of the West Indies all-conquering team, he proudly represented Barbados and the West Indies and opened doors for many others to follow.”
Sir Learie turned out in 18 Tests, scoring four half-centuries and taking 58 wickets, before going on to lead a successful career as an activist and Member of Parliament in his native Trinidad and Tobago.
Haynes, meanwhile, gathered 7,487 runs from 116 Tests at an average of 41 with 18 centuries, while tallying 8,648 runs at an average of 41 with 17 centuries, in 238 One-Day Internationals.
He formed part of the legendary opening partnership with Sir Gordon Greenidge, which headlined the dominant West Indies side of the late 1970s and 1980s.
Sir Gordon was inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame 12 years ago.
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