Jagdeo To GCB: Heal Rifts
PRESIDENT Bharat Jagdeo last night called on the executives of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) to solve their internal rifts expeditiously. At the same time he lauded the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) for the successful launching of their second annual 10/10 nationwide softball cricket competition.
Addressing a gathering that included Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport Dr Frank Anthony and Minister of Finance Dr Ashni Singh, along with former Guyana and West Indies all-rounder Roger Harper at the Convention Centre, Liliendaal last night, President Jagdeo said the GCB can count on his Government’s support once they have resolved their issues.
While outlining the several infrastructures that have taken place across Guyana in sports, including the paving of the national stadium car park, the commencement of the athletics track at Leonora, the squash courts and even the Olympic-size swimming pool, President Jagdeo called on the various sports organisation heads to have a sound mind and strong vision, while taking a closer look at cricket generally in Guyana.
“It is not just cricket alone, but what is essential for the development of all these sports in our country is not just better facilities, but sound management and a vision for the way forward by the heads of the sports organisation, outside of the Government, and sometimes it is painful to see the confusion that exists in many organisations that lead the sectors.
“I really do hope with the cricket board that we have new and strong leadership, that is creditable leadership, that could guide the development of cricket in our country for the next years to come. I know they are some good people who are seeking to lead the cricketing organisation and I hope they succeed in creating the kind of room and that they are given an opportunity to implement their vision.”
Highlighting the death of cricket within the schools system, President Jagdeo called on those in charge to restore the game within the schools for the younger generation.
“As everyone has specified, this competition (GT&T 10/10) is one that brings people from right across Guyana together and could become the incubator for the wave of cricketers in our country and also the international level.
“We are very, very supportive of anything that would bring our people together, even as our young people interacting with each other, building a friendship and camaraderie across the Regions, as we work to achieve the things and at the same time strive for togetherness across our country firstly, and secondly ensure young people have some support system.
“In a systematic way, they can play cricket together particularly at the lower level and eventually get up to the higher level. But unfortunately, school cricket has practically disappeared many, many years now and we have to make a big effort to restore cricket in schools so that youngsters have numerous opportunities of playing cricket and whatever we can do to make this happen as well as make this competition more of a success, you have the full support of my Government,” said President Jagdeo.
He added: “Some people are caught in this negative syndrome, always seeing something wrong with our players. In Trinidad and Tobago and some of the smaller islands, they are fiercely loyal to their cricketers.
“Not that they are uncritical of them when they don’t perform, but they are fiercely loyal to people who share their same blood and many times, we as Guyanese are more critical of our very own and at times not standing up for them, when wrong is being done to them, especially by the West Indies Cricket Board and I hope the cricket board here in Guyana resolve their issues shortly.”
Also making brief remarks were Chief Executive Officer of GT&T Yog Mahadeo and Dr Anthony, while Brij Parasnauth gave an impact of the 10/10 cricket to the audiences who witnessed cultural presentations from the National Dance School, Calvin Burnette and Quacy Coates and Young Bill Rogers.
Marian Academy fifth form student Kiana McKenzie was presented with a cash award after she submitted the winning jingle for this year’s tournament which has over $10M in cash and prizes, with the winner of both the male and female categories taking home $2M and $1M respectively.