Side not a National team, West Indies selectees cannot play – GCB President
By Sean Devers
A team of Guyanese players was published last week in another section of the media to participate in the People’s Progressive Party’s (PPP) 20/20 cricket competition on September 4 & 5 at the Guyana National Stadium at Providence.
Several TV and radio commercials have been promoting the 2-day affair and President of the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) and West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Director Chetram Singh explained that the GCB is not involved in the tournament which he informed is being hosted by the ruling PPP party as a fund-raising event.
“While anyone can organize private competitions we (GCB) don’t sanction private 20/20 tournaments and the GCB is not involved in this competition. The organizers informed us about the event and I am aware
of it,” Singh disclosed.
The GCB head since 1992 added that since the GCB has no player under contract they cannot prevent any National player from playing in private a competition once it does not clash with GCB cricket.
The commercials indicate that Guyana’s newest Test Player Travis Dowlin and Christopher Barnwell are the among the players to be on show but Singh stated that none of the four Guyanese selected for the pre-Champions Trophy West Indies training camp in Barbados will be allowed to play in the 20/20 tournament.
Dowlin, Barnwell, Leon Johnson and Royston Crandon are the Guyanese in the squad and Singh revealed that since the camp coincides with the event, the Guyana players involved cannot play in the PPP competition.
“Johnson has asked if he can come back home for the competition but we (GCB) said no,” Singh explained.
A senior GCB executive informed that the GCB had planned a 20/20 Festival for this month but because of the PPP’s competition and the inability of a
prospective sponsor to provide funds for both events, the GCB competition was postponed.
The official said that the GCB competition will now be played during the week leading up the Regional One-Day tournament which starts in Guyana on October 28.
“We will not have to pay for the teams to come to Guyana since they will be coming for the Regional One-Day competition and our 20/20 competition, which should involve teams representing Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados and Jamaica will be used as warm-up games in Guyana’s conditions for the Regional One-Day tournament,” the GCB official stated.
Chairman of the National selection panel Claude Raphael informed that only the Guyana selectors can pick a National team, adding that the side selected for the PPP fund-raider is a team of Guyanese but not a National side.
“I have no knowledge of this competition except what I have seen on TV,” Raphael said. According to the TV commercial, this will be the first International matches under lights at the Stadium but a GCB official denied that the games had been given International status.
While the semi-finals and final of the last Regional One-Day series was played under lights at Providence, matches in the 2010 World Cup are expected to be the first International matches to be played under lights in Guyana.