Antigua to host regional Sports Ministers meetingWritten by Nkrumah Baptiste
Antigua will soon become the hub for a Ministers of Sports meeting which is planned for April 22 to 23 at Royal Antigua Beach Resort.
The two-day event will also host members of the Leeward Islands Cricket Association (LICA), Windward Islands Cricket Association (WICA), and West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) as they brainstorm on the way forward for cricket within the sub-region and the West Indies in toto.
When contacted, LICA President Gregory Shillingford said the meeting will highlight some of the challenges faced by sub-regional bodies as it pertains to the planning and execution of tournaments within the region while seeking to employ the assistance of the governments where it pertains to waivers of taxes and fees associated with putting on a tournament.
“That is the objective of the meeting – to discuss factors; to look at the status of cricket in both the region and the sub-region; and then to look at what technical issues and what proposals we can consider both in terms of transportation, equipment, facilities, governance and financing. That is what we aim to do: to look at how to sensitise the governments in terms of the situation we are in,” he said.
“Whilst it may be Leewards, every minister should be concerned that the citizens who play for LICA are not meeting regional and international standards and they must be made to understand that they need to take some responsibility. It cannot be that a little non-profit organisation is responsible for developing cricket,” Shillingford added.
The LICA head added that the inclusion of both WICA and WICB would further highlight the challenges faced within the region on a whole. He said that presentations would also be made by a number of other individuals on the way forward.
“We have included Windward Islands with LICA to meet with the sports ministers as a sub-region. So on Sunday, we will have a number of presentations in which we will open with a presentation by the WICB on the state of cricket and then the Windward Islands association does a presentation on the state of cricket in the Windward Islands and then LICA will do a presentation on the state of cricket in the Leewards,” he said.
“We are trying to get Curtly Ambrose to speak on issues impacting on performance in the sub-region. We will then have Tony Howards doing proposals for improving technical performance from schools to the national level.”
Persons outside of the invited guests wishing to attend the two-day event will pay a fee of US $60 per day which is exclusive of hotel accommodations.
The meeting, which will run from 9 am to 5 pm on Sunday and 9 am to 2 pm on Monday, is sponsored by LIAT, Inet, and the Grand Royal Antiguan Beach Resort.
The event concludes with a closing ceremony and press conference on Monday.