Jan 01, 2016 Sports
By Sean Devers
As we start the most significant year in our history I believe the Government should honour those who have given outstanding contributions to cricket in Guyana by having their names affixed to the Stands at the Providence Stadium as part of Guyana’s 50th Anniversary Celebrations next May.
The Media Center should be named the Reds Perrier Media Centre, while the RED Stand could be named after Rohan Kanhai & Alvin Kalicharran, the GREEN Stand after the late Roy Fredericks, the ORANGE Stand after Clive Lloyd and GRASS Mound or Party Stand after Shiv Chanderpaul. Colin Croft and Lance Gibbs’ names should at the Northern and Southern ends to inspire those bowling from those ends.
The Guyana National Stadium at Providence on the East Bank of Demerara was completed for the 2007 Cricket World Cup and it has been almost nine years since the Stadium hosted its first International game in the World Cup match on March 28, 2007 when South Africa battled Sri Lanka.
Guyana is the only Country in the West Indies that has an International Cricket venue without names of past Players, Administrators or Journalists on its stands.
In Jamaica there is the George Headley stand, in Trinidad & Tobago there is the Brian Lara Pavilion, in Barbados there is the 3Ws stand, honouring Clyde Walcott, Everton Weeks and Sir Frank Worrell, arguable the best West Indies Captain of all time. Even in small Islands like Antigua, the entire venue is named after its most famous Cricketer; Sir Vivian Richards while in Dominica International Umpire Billy Doctrove’s name adorns one of the stands there.
Guyana has produced 49 Test cricketers since Maurice Fernandes became the first in the inaugural Test match against England in 1928 in addition to several other persons who have made outstanding contributions to the development of Guyana’s cricket over the years and it is time our cricketing stalwarts are honoured by naming the stands at Providence after the most illustrious of the lot.
The last Government showed little interest in honouring our former Cricketers (or other sports personalities for that matter) in any meaningful way and the stands at Guyana’s only International Cricket venue are still being referred to as ‘Red Stand, Green Stand, Orange Stand and Grass Mound.
When doing commentary in Barbados you would say “in comes ‘whoever’ from the Joel Garner end” or when in Jamaica ‘whoever’ moves in smoothly from the Michael Holding end” but at Providence you are unable to attach any names to the two ends which could of course be used to promote Guyana in a positive light by letting the millions listening know that ‘so and so’ is from this Country.
The stadium was built by the Government of Guyana with substantial financial assistance through a grant and a loan from the Government of India and can accommodate 15,000 people.
Efforts should be made to install an electronic scoreboard which could also be used as a replay screen to upgrade the Stadium to a truly World Class venue.
When asked about the naming of the Stands, Sports Minister Nicolette Henry stated that she did not want to spend the next five years defending the names.
However, many of those names adorned the stands at Bourda for over two decades without any complaints.
Minster Henry has an outstanding background in the Medical field but seems not too familiar with the dynamics of Sports.
She would have been better served in the Ministry of Heath.
Christopher Jones, who has done a lot since being appointed Director of Sports is more suited for the position of Sports Minister.
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