The tragedy was that whoever was responsible for preparing the wicket did so much that was wrong in the preparatory exercise that play was impossible.
The WICB was made to look rather bad in the international cricket community but additionally it rubbed off on all of us involved in sport around the Caribbean. Everywhere that the story of the abandoned cricket test was told the entire region was the laughing stock.
Some cricket historians or regional comedians would readily recall the situation at the Antigua Recreation Ground some time ago when the West Indies were engaged in a test series at home and the rains fell quite heavily. Following the deluge the poor drainage system left the outfield unfit for play. Helicopters were brought in to assist the ground staff already outfitted with water boots, buckets and sponges. The embarrassment at the time was so much that following the match the government of Lester Bird at the time addressed the situation and even had grass flown in from the USA to impress the cricketing authorities that his country was committed to the sport and to maintaining its privileged status among regional venues.
As if the foregoing situations were not sufficiently embarrassing the new cricket facility in Antigua and Barbuda turned out to be another bombshell. During the 2007 Cricket World Cup when Australia was playing Bangladesh, the rains came and play had to be held up for several hours after rain fell for a brief period. The problem was the inadequacy of the drainage system.
The Wisden Cricket Almanac described the situation at the time: Antigua’s reputation, already damaged by low attendances and over-cautious officialdom, hit rock bottom amidst farcical scenes at its new stadium.
The reality was that the match being played at the time was one of the crucial Super Eight, a critical juncture in the Tournament.