Top Teams To Benefit Handsomely

Date Published: 
Guyana Times
Avenash Ramzan

Known for its shrewd management, tactical nous and proven track record of hosting successful tournaments, the Guyana Floodlight Softball Cricket Association (GFSCA) will once again embark on its biggest project of the year when it stages the Guyana Softball Club for the fourth year in succession.

Undoubtedly the country’s most prestigious softball tournament, attracting teams from all corners of Guyana and North America, the highly anticipated event is slated for October 31 to November 2 at several venues across the country.

The Guyana Softball Cup commenced in 2011 and instantly became a hit with players and fans alike, attracting massive crowds and also putting some hard earned cash in the pockets of those who entertain with bat and ball on the field.

This year promises to be even better, as the GFSCA is aiming to surpass the achievements of the previous three years in terms of spectators’ involvement and the handsome rewards at stake for the players.

As was the case in previous editions of the tournament, there will be two categories- one for teams contesting the Men’s Open and the other for the Masters players, aged 45 and over.

The champion team in the Men’s Open is guaranteed a whopping $800,000 first prize and a huge trophy, while the losing finalist will have to settle for $200,000 and a trophy. In the Masters’ division, the winning team will pocket $600,000 with the runner-up assured of $150,000. The Man-of-the-Match in both finals will receive a trophy.

As has been the case in the past, the Most Valuable Player of each category will become the proud owner of a softball bracelet, made of gold and diamond studs, compliments of Steve’s Jewellery.

On the day of the final, there will be lots of hampers and giveaways for spectators. Additionally, two spectators can win return tickets from Survival Travel Agency to the beautiful island of Aruba. All the spectators need to do is retain their half tickets and listen for their numbers to be called over the Public Address system during the final.

Two dozen teams will compete in this year’s event, with 12 from Guyana, seven from New York, three from Florida and two from Canada. During the three-day championship, there will be a total of 36 preliminary games, followed by four semi-finals and two finals.

In an effort to expand the reach of the competition and ensure maximum participation from spectators, the organisers have increased the number of venues this year. Grounds earmarked to host games are Police Sports Club, Everest Cricket Club, Georgetown Cricket Club, Demerara Cricket Club, Ghandi Youth Organisation, Muslim Youth Organisation, Enmore Community Centre and Enterprise Busta Sports Club.

Trophy Stall and New York Better are the defending champions of the Open and Masters categories respectively, while the previous champions were NYSCL New York (Open) and Savage Masters in 2012 and Cotton Field Wild Oats (Open) and Regal Seniors (Masters) in 2011.

According to information emanating from the GFSCA, this year’s tournament has an estimated budget of around $10 million.

“On all three previous Guyana Softball Cups, we managed to clear all expenses and were in the positive. Guyana Softball Cup Four, we are hoping for the same, which is very important for the tournament’s future. With the efforts of our hardworking and dedicated GFSCA members, this tournament will be successful again and is here to stay. Our sponsors- present and past- are the other main reasons for Guyana Softball Cup success and its future,” the GFSCA said in a statement.

It added, “The money, which we made so far; where it is? Just look at the six permanent light towers at the DCC ground. You can see it, plus members had to also dig deep into their own pockets to get it completed. It is 90 percent done and before the start of Guyana Softball Cup Four it will be finished.”

With a few weeks to go before the start of the competition, the GFSCA is working feverishly to tie up the loose ends and deliver another tournament of the highest standard. Given the tremendous success of the past, that shouldn’t be much of a bugbear.

It is now up to the players to give the fans their worth in what is anticipated to be three days of exciting softball action.