President of GCB, Drubahadur, Secretary Anand Sanasie, and TDO Colin Stuart, met with the Minister of Education who oversees sports, Dr. Rupert Roopnarine, and outlined to him the Board’s immediate and upcoming programs.
The Officials explained the structure and benefits of the National Secondary School Cricket League. It commenced earlier today with an official ceremony at the Everest Cricket Club. Over 150 secondary schools across the country will be participating in the League. The competition also has a champion school pathway that would see the national champion fully sponsored by the GCB, participating in the annual Sir Garfield Sobers Secondary Schools Cricket Competition in Barbados.
Colin Stuart lobbied strongly for the development of school grounds across the country. He posited that when the League is over, students need to keep training to further develop themselves. He noted that one of the aims of the League is to channel players towards joining cricket clubs. But, those who cannot get into clubs can use their school grounds to train. Hence, the need for proper pitches and favorable ground conditions is necessary. He believes it would not take much from the Ministry of Education/Sports to partner with the GCB to execute this plan.
Minister Roopnarine is impressed with the expectations of the League and went on to discuss the necessities in developing the school grounds. He noted that he would explain the proposal to his colleagues relevant to the subject.
Also ready to go on the GCB program, is the 8-team Local Franchise League. The Officials gave Minister Roopnarine an in-depth view of it. This League would comprise of franchises from the geographical cricket areas in Guyana. These areas are Upper Corentyne (Albion to Corentyne), Lower Corentyne (Albion to New Amsterdam/Canje), East Bank Demerara/ Upper Demerara, West Demerara, East Coast Demerara, West Berbice, Georgetown and Essequibo. It will have three formats: T20, 50-Overs and 3-Day. With this League, a lot higher level of cricket will be played.
Anand Sanasie who is also a Director of WICB, informed the Minister about the West Indies, Australia and South Africa tri-nation ODI series which will be played in the West Indies in June 2016. Three of these matches will be played in Guyana on the 6, 8 and 10 of June. Sanasie said the GoG stand to benefit greatly from this series; he gave an estimated profit which is satisfying. He further presented to the Minister a copy of the Economic Impact Assessment from the England Tour of West Indies earlier this year.
The Officials also proposed to invite foreign teams and have a weekend of T20 matches in May 2016 to observe Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary. The Minister is happy about the idea, stating that he will try to fit it onto the calendar.
There were other ventures of GCB that were discussed and debated, some require government assistance. Dr. Roopnarine assured that as long they will benefit Guyana as a whole and develop cricket and cricketers, there should not be issues supporting progress.