Cricket Review: Controversy continued to mar Guyana’s cricket in 2013
Guyana failed to win any title at any level
Compiled by Sean Devers
The year 2013 began with the unresolved dispute among cricket Board executives which continued from early January 2011 when two factions of the Demerara Cricket Board (DCB) were elected at two separate elections.
The DCB Bisoondyal Singh faction and the DCB Raj Singh faction were both installed but the current GCB has since recognized the Raj Singh faction after receiving a report from a special committee mandated to investigate and recommend which faction should be recognized. A Legal opinion was also presented by committee member Andrew Pollard of the Law firm Hughes, Fields and Stoby.
New President of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Jamaican Dave Cameron endorsed the current GCB as the Administrators of cricket in Guyana and slammed the Cricket Administration Bill currently being tabled in Parliament.
In a letter on October 24, 2013 sent to Sherlock Isaacs, Clerk of the National Assembly the WICB expressed non-support of the document.
While expressing the need to see the game being managed in a proper way, the WICB clearly stated that they cannot support the dissolution of the existing GCB. They also expressed concern over aspects of the new constitution drafted during the process.
The WICB, while not wanting to dictate constitutional reform of any of its members, will want any changes in the running of any member organisation be done in the proper and democratic way as stated in the laws of the WICB and its parent body the International Cricket Council (ICC), who is against government involvement and dictates in the sport.
When the final sitting of Parliament was held on December 19 the Cricket Bill was not addressed.
January 27: GCB Elections sparks controversy:
The GCB elections on January 27, 2013, at which Dru Bahadur replaced Ramsay Ali who resigned as President, only sparked more controversy which severely marred the smooth running of Guyana’s cricket in 2013.
A Cricket Administration bill was tabled following a dispute between the Government of Guyana, its Interim Management Committee (IMC) and the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) over the state of cricket in Guyana.
Sport Minister, Dr Frank Anthony moved the second reading of the Cricket Bill when the 63rd sitting of the National Assembly of the 10th parliament reconvened in November, 2013.
The bill was returned to the National Assembly on August 7, but was deferred until the parliamentary recess ended in October.
The bill sought to establish the GCB and county boards as corporate bodies and was tabled by the Guyana Government in December 2012 in a bid to end the Cricket impasse. Cricket is considered the National Sport in Guyana. It provided constitutions for the GCB, the Demerara, Berbice and the Essequibo Cricket Boards.
Chief Justice Ian Chang had thrown out the matter on the grounds that all of the associations embroiled in the matter were legal non entities and had been so from their inception. Therefore they could not sue or be sued. He opined that the Sports Minister should get involved in an effort to fix the problem.
In the name of Sport Minister, Dr Frank Anthony, the bill tabled in Parliament seeks to remedy this by establishing the boards as bodies corporate and conserves their status and operations.
The bill was the subject of much discussion by critical stakeholders within the cricketing fraternity, and was reviewed by a Special Select Committee of the National Assembly of Guyana.
The members of the Select Committee are Christopher Jones, Joseph Harmon, Basil Williams, and Dr Rupert Roopnarine of APNU, Kemraj Ramjattan of the AFC, while Odinga Lumumba, Attorney General Anil Nandlall, Sport Minister Dr Frank Anthony and Neil Kumar represented the government.
Several amendments have been made to the bill including changes to provisions that the WICB had objected to. In the initial bill, one of the provisions stated that the “rules, regulations, bylaws and constitutions of the former Guyana Cricket Board are replaced by the Constitution of the Guyana Cricket Board” and further that “each and every office established under the rules, regulations, bylaws and constitutions of the former Guyana Cricket Board shall cease to exist at the commencement of this Act.”
This provision was at the crux of the cricket impasse as the WICB had said it will not recognise any dissolution of the GCB.
The Guyana Court of Appeal unanimously upheld the appeal filed by the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) and instructed the initial Trial Judge, Acting Chief Justice Ian Chang S.C., to issue the order nisi sought by the Cricket Board to quash the decision of the Minister of Sports, Dr Frank Anthony to disband the GCB.
In its decision, the Court of Appeal, which was read by Acting Chancellor Carl A. Singh CCH, the Court also made short thrift of another decision of the Acting Chief Justice Ian Chang SC in Haniff v Ali, which was to the effect that the GCB was a legal non-entity and could not bring legal proceedings.
The Court of Appeal agreed with Sanjeev Datadin acting for the GCB that the GCB was a private entity which received no Government funding to carry out its objectives. The Court of Appeal further ruled that the GCB could lawfully institute the proceedings which was before the Court and was entitled to be heard.
The cricket politics, unavailability of grounds because of non cricketing activities, (especially in Georgetown and the East Coast), the absence of most of the top players due to overseas contracts, the financial inability of many clubs to maintain a strong cricketing structure, the lack of two-day club cricket in Essequibo and the rapidly declining standard of division one cricket were among the reasons why cricket in Guyana continued to go downhill. The Berbice Cricket Board and the Georgetown Cricket Associations, were once again far ahead of the others in organising games and acquiring sponsorship.
Guyana failed to win any title at any level although the Guyana Amazon Warriors, which included International non Guyanese players, produced Guyana’s best effort on the field.
In 2013, Shiv Chanderpaul became the first West Indian to play 150 Tests and the second behind Brian Lara to reach 11,000 Test runs.
Part two: Jan 6-20: Final Caribbean t20
Guyana began the year with an impressive showing in the last Regional Caribbean t20, which was replaced by the CPL.
The South Americans beat CCC in their opening game and got the better of Barbados before losing to T&T in their last game in Trinidad. They then lost to Jamaica and beat the Leewards and Windwards in St Lucia. Guyana got past Jamaica by six wickets in the semi finals in St Lucia.
Trinidad & Tobago trounced Guyana by nine wickets with 45 balls to spare in the lop-sided Final after the South Americans made 116-6 off 20 overs and T&T responded with 120-1 from 12.3 overs.
Chris Barnwell scored the most runs in the tournament (245 from 8 matches) while Chanderpaul (153 from six matches) was the only other Guyanese with 150 runs.
Bajan Tino Best finished with the most wickets (10), while Ronsford Beaton and Steven Jacobs (7) were the leading wicket takers for Guyana. Barnwell had a useful all-round display by taking six wickets, the same as leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo.
Guyana had a chance of qualifying for their second Champions League tournament after playing in South Africa in 2010 but T&T captured their third consecutive t20 title to spoil Guyana’s party.
Feb 9-March 7: Regional four-day:
This was the 47th first-class cricket tournament held in the West Indies and seven teams competed in the round-robin tournament followed by the semi-finals and a final.
Barbados beat T&T in the Final after Guyana, who drew with the Leewards in their opening game, lost to Barbados, Windwards, T&T, and Jamaica. Their only win was against CCC. Guyana finished at the bottom for the second consecutive year.
Devon Smith (700) scored the most runs in the tournament while Leon Johnson was the top Guyanese run scorer with 430 from six matches, with a highest score of 87.
Assad Fudadin (289) was Guyana’s next best batsman, while Nikita Miller and Shane Shillingford captured 52 wickets each to be top the bowlers. Veerasammy Permaul (30), Bishoo (20) and Steven Jacobs (17) were most successful Guyanese.
Feb 7-April 21: Regional Super50.
Guyana won just two matches in this tournament which was won by the Windwards. Like in the First-class competition, Devon Smith scored the most runs (344), while Johnson was again Guyana’s top run getter with 204 runs from six matches. Trevon Griffith (152 from 6 matches) was the only other batsman to reach 150.
Shillingford had 17 wickets while Beaton was the leading wicket taker for Guyana with nine. Bishoo and Paul Wintz with eight each were the next best bowlers for Guyana.
July 14 & 16: Pakistan vs West Indies: International cricket returns to Guyana
The West Indies opposed Pakistan in the first two ODIs in a five-match series at Providence, marking a return to International cricket to Guyana after a two-year absence.
The hosts lost the first match before leveling the series in the next and the return of international cricket to Guyana was deemed as good for local businesses and the tourism industry by Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) Indranauth Haralsingh. The CPL was played just after the Pakistan series and GTA Director said the CPL was also good for Guyana.
“The Limacol Caribbean Premier League (CPL) is a huge investment in cricket, for the first time we have a Guyanese branded product that is fully sponsoring the CPL, so this is a signature accomplishment. It will not only help with the product branding, but also with the branding of the destination,” Haralsingh said.
The GTA Director added that all of the hotels in and around Georgetown were filled with CPL officials, media operators, and cricket fans from all around the world.
July 30 –August 24: CPL in Guyana:
The Chris Gayle led Jamaica Tallawahs took the inaugural CPL tournament by beating the Ramnaresh Sarwan led Guyana Amazon Warriors in the Final as the Guyana based team produced an impressive run until the finale.
The Warriors whipped T&T in the semis after they had gotten past them in their opening game on home soil at Providence.
Barbados Tridents’ Shoaib Malik (272 runs from 8 matches) was the tournament’s leading run scorer, while Trinidadian Lendl Simmons scored the most runs for the ‘Warriors’. Next on the aggregate list for Guyana Warriors was New Zealander James Franklin (203), the only other batsman in the Guyana based side to reach 200 runs.
Jamaican left-arm seam bowler Krishmar Santokie, playing for Guyana, was the top wicket-taker in the competition with 16 scalps, while Permaul was the next most successful Guyanese bowler with 10 wickets.
The CPL was a huge success and attracted massive crowds which produced a carnival-like atmosphere for all the games in Guyana.
October 5-21: Bangladesh tour to Guyana: Cricket returns to Albion
The Bangladesh under-19 team embarked on their first tour to the West Indies and for the first time ever an entire series in the West Indies was played in a single country.
The conditions and pitches in Guyana more suited Bangladesh and they won the seven-match series 4-3 as the West Indian teenagers struggled badly against spin.
The sixth ODI was held at Albion in Berbice as WICB cricket returned to the venue for the first time since September 2011. An inspection team from the WICB had at that time declared the ground unfit to host the regional one-day between Guyana and Barbados after the Berbice Expo had badly damaged the ground.
The crowd in Berbice for the Youth ODI was the biggest of the series and the condition of the Albion ground and Media Centre was once again fit for First-Class Cricket. Guyanese Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Shemron Hetymer and Gudakesh Motie-Kanhai represented the West Indies youth team.
July 12-26: Regional Youth cricket: Under-15:
Guyana finished third in this year’s regional under-15 tournament in Jamaica. Trinidad and Tobago won the competition but Guyanese Renaldo Mohammed copped the Most Outstanding Cricketer Award.
Mohammed’s teammate, Richie Looknauth won the trophy for Best Bowler, while T &T’s Captain Kirsten Kallicharan was adjudged the Best Batsman. Mohammed, known more his batting, was the leading bowler in the Tournament, finishing the tournament with 33 wickets, inclusive of a match haul of 14 wickets against the Leewards.
Guyana was adjudged the Most Disciplined Team while Guyana’s Ashmead Nedd was identified among the most promising players.
June 29-July 8: Under-17:
Trinidad and Tobago won the Regional under-17 tournament held in Tobago and Guyana finished last despite Shimron Hetmyer (192 runs) finishing fifth among the run-scorers. The Berbician was one of only two batsmen to score a century in the tournament. No Guyanese bowler had 10 wickets.
July 9-17: Regional under-19: 50 overs
Jamaica won the tournament while T&T left-hander Jeremy Solozano scored the only century. Guyana finished fourth in the 50-over version with Shemron Hetymer led the Guyana scoring with 167 runs with a highest score of 92. Tagenarine Chanderpaul (127) was the only other Guyanese to get a fifty while Shawn Pereira was the only Guyanese to take 10 wickets.
July 19-August 9: Regional Under-19: Three-Day
Jamaica won both the Regional under-19 three-day and one-day titles in St Kitts as Guyana failed to win its first one-day title since the competition began in 1998.
In 2007, also in St Kitts, Guyana were crowned three-day champions. This was the last time they won a three-day under-19 title.
Guyana finished third in the Three-day competition after and along with T&T, who finished second, were the only teams to register two outright wins.
Guyana suffered a 131-run loss to T&T and by eight wickets to Barbados before rebounding with two wins in their last three matches.
Tagenarine Chanderpaul made 66 and then 66 not out while Berbician Ashkay Homraj scored a first innings ton when Guyana defeated the Windwards. Pereira took five wickets in the first innings and Motie-Kanhai four in the second.
Guyana finished with a 10-wicket win over the Leewards as Chanderpaul fashioning a classy unbeaten 104 and left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie-Kanhai took two five wicket hauls in the game. Guyana took first innings points in a draw against Jamaica.
Aug 5-14: Women’s Regional super50
Demerara Captain June Ogle scored the most runs (226 from 4matches) in the Women’s Super 50 tournament in Grenada and was one of only two batters to make a century while Berbicians Tremayne Smartt (103) and Shemaine Campbell (165) were among the top 10 batters in the tournament.
However, Guyana failed to win their semi-final game against T&T who beat Jamaica in the Final. Campbell was the only Guyanese to finish among the top 10 bowlers with five wickets.
August 16-21: Women’s Regional t20
The t20 tournament was played just after the 50 overs tournament and Guyana led again by the batting of Campbell (101) and Ogle (89) played unbeaten to reach the semi finals which they lost to Jamaica.
July 18-21: Regional Girls U-19:
The Guyana Under-19 female cricketers experienced mixed fortunes in the TTCB T20 Competition in Trinidad. Won by T&T, rain hampered the tournament with Guyana beating St Lucia for their only win.
January 10-24: Senior Inter-County four-day
Without their senior players who were in Trinidad for the Caribbean t20, Demerara still emerged winners of the 2013 four-day Inter-County tournament when they defeated Berbice by four wickets in the final round of the unsponsored competition at Everest.
Half-centuries from Rajendra Chandrika and Shemroy Barrington and a five-wicket haul from off-spinner Zaheer Mohamed led Demerara to the title after the other final round game at Wales between Essequibo and the President’s X1 ended in a draw.
Sewnarine Chattergoon scored the only ton in the competition although fellow Berbician Anthony Bramble fell for 96 against the President’s X1.
September 21-28: Senior Inter-County 50 overs
Defending champions, Demerara and Berbice played to a historic first ever Tie in the Pepsi Inter-County 50-over final at the Albion and were declared joint winners.
Set a revised target of 151, Demerara finished on 150 -9. Needing 13 from the final over, Demerara’s last pair of Paul Wintz and Andre Stoll scored 10 runs off the first five balls. With three to get off the last ball, a fumble allowed the batsmen two to tie score.
December 3: GCB Awards Ceremony:
After not holding an Awards Ceremony last year the 2013 GCB Awards Ceremony was held at the Georgetown Cricket Club (GCC) on December 3 to honor their outstanding performers for the year.
Johnson and Ogle copped the Male and Female cricketers of the year respectively while Tagenarine Chanderpaul was adjudged Junior Cricketer of the year.
December 5-18: Senior Inter-County four-day:
The GT&T/Hand-in-Hand four-day Inter-County tournament, scheduled to start in November, was postponed due to heavy rain and floods and was played in December with Berbice dethroning Demerara as champions.
Royston Crandon and Vishal Singh scored centuries while Devendra Bishoo was the leading wicket taker with 25 wickets. Singh (244) scored the most runs.