The Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) on Wednesday night last honoured legendary former Guyana and West Indies batsman Alvin Isaac Kallicharran. The ceremony took place at the Pegasus Hotel where the board also launched the second edition of “The Guyana Cricketer” magazine.
Kallicharan who played 66 test matches and scored 4,399 runs at an average of 44.43 including 12 centuries from 1972-1981 was given a special token by the GCB at the event which was well attended by past and present cricketers, administrators as well as a number of ardent fans.
Speaking at the ceremony, Kallicharan thanked the GCB for inviting him to help with the development of the young players. He congratulated the Guyana senior, U19 and U15 teams for their success at the regional level in 2014. Kallicharan pointed out that success doesn’t stop there. “Success follows success. You can’t be great cricketers in one innings or spell, rather one have to perform consistently over a period of time,” he added.
Kallicharran is currently conducting coaching clinics with young players across Guyana and also had sessions with the players that participated in the recently concluded inter-county U19 tournament. He said that he is impressed with the talent of the players. “It is so pleasing to see the youths in the U19 tournament; it brought back memories of the glory days. I am so happy to give back to the villages that have produced so many greats for Guyana and the West Indies,” he said.
Kallicharran, who hails from Port Mourant, briefly recalled his boyhood days stating that their passion for the game was immense. “The sacrifice was good, but for me it wasn’t a sacrifice, it was something that I wanted. Credit must be given to the Kanhais, Solomons and the Butchers who laid the foundation for me and others to follow,” he posited.
Kalicharan who got emotional as his speech progressed noted that the West Indies is not producing as it used to. “Guyana formed the back bone of West Indies batting in the 70s. Many of us came from sugar estates and school cricket played an important part in our development. It is sad to know that there is little school cricket now and the estates are not doing as it used to. The Government and the GCB must work together,” he stressed.
Kallicharran explained that sports create a positive impact in society and lauded the GCB for their efforts.
Speaking at the launching of “The Guyana Cricketer” magazine, GCB marketing manger Raj Singh said that the board takes their mandate of administering the game very seriously and have been making tremendous strides. “The revenue obtained from this publication was earmarked to be used for cricket development and the co-sponsoring our senior four-day tournament for which we are struggling to attract sponsor for the last fiver years,” he added.
Singh stated that sponsorship continues to plague all sport and they have submitted a proposal to the Government to treat sponsorship dollars as a deduction of gross revenue and not as expense item which would encourage sponsors.
He informed that among the major objectives of the magazine are to chronicle the achievements of local cricketers and highlights tournaments run by the GCB and WICB.
The magazine contains an exclusive interview with Kallicharran, features on rising stars Shimron Hetmyer, Keemo Paul and Joshua Persaud, the 2014 awards ceremony and the 2015 cricket calendar among other items.
Secretary of the GCB Anand Sanasie thanked the management of Pegasus and sponsors.
(Taken from Kaieteur News)