And with good cause, for history reveals that he was utterly dismissive of Richard Gabriel and David Williams; that when talking about Larry Gomes as he always appended the epithet "phlegmatic"; that Gus Logie, to him, didn't have what it takes to be on the team, far less to be vice-captain; that he regarded Brian Lara -even after his magnificent 92 against the murderous wrath of Garner and Marshall at the Queen's Park Oval- as "too young to soca" -Lara, then, was just 18 years old- even as twelfth man; that he regularly bemoaned Phil Simmons's inclusion, even for a One-Dayer; that he's excoriatingly disdainful of Daren Ganga -for years now, the shrewdest, therefore, winningest captain within the West indies- and of incumbent wicketkeeper, Dinesh Ramdin; and that Dave Mohammed doesn't belong up there where the air is rare.
History, too, reveals that Tony Cozier is gifted at prescience, as the heads of those whom Tony Cozier excoriates quickly end up on the selectors' chopping block, or, worse yet, never earn their second look, except they deliver such exceptional performances that even the Heavens cry out on their behalf. Which is what Lara had to do. But Cozier is not known to practice necromancy, therefore, the accuracy of his foreknowledge has elsewhere to lie, perhaps in his being able to exert tremendous behind-the-scenes sway.
THE GREAT ESCAPE SMOKESCREEN:
And, so, it would have been taken, as well, as an innocuous choice of title, except that it belied what was buried within the three paragraphs immediately preceding the penultimate one, for therein, just as he did with a split infinitive, he sticks in another anti-Trinbagonian coded directive to the West Indian test cricket selectors:
"...It is the other way round for Gayle and the West Indies. They are on an emotional high after their two victories, one actual, the other moral, and everyone is fit.
But they must know they were lucky to get away with the inconsistency that continues to run them into trouble.
In the circumstances, it would be unwise to now (sic) change the XI. Even Powell acknowledged yesterday that his record does not merit his retention as the back-up fast bowler to Jerome Taylor and Edwards, but to leave him out would upset some of the fervour he helped create in Antigua..."
WHERE THERE'S SMOKE THERE'S FIRE:
What arrant nonsense be this? Or, as pint-sized Gary Coleman used to say, "Whatchu talking about Willis?"
"...unwise to now (sic) change the XI..." in the face of the failure of the opening pair -not Gayle- and of the for-a-long-while-now-beyond-the-top-of-his-game performances of one Lendl Simmons -who, incidentally, happens to be from Trinidad and Tobago?
Ah, Tony boy! Your anti-Trinbagonian slip's showing one more time!
Lendl Simmons raises his bat to celebrate his double century against England.
EXTINGUISHING THE FIRE:
Perhaps, instead, it's time all of Trinbago rises up and collectively shows you theirs?