By Zaheer Mohamed
The Guyana Floodlight Softball Cricket Association (GFSCA) has launched the seventh edition of the Guyana Softball Cup yesterday at Demerara Cricket Club pavilion.
The tournament, which will be played in the Masters (Over 45) and Open categories will commence on November 3 at various venues in Georgetown and conclude two days later under lights at DCC. Some twenty four teams are expected to take part including 10 from North America. Following 36 preliminary round games the top four teams in each category will progress to the semi finals. A female exhibition game is also billed for the day of the finals.
The winning team in the Open category will take home a trophy and $800,000 and the runner up a trophy and $200,000, while the champions in the Masters division will pocket a trophy and $600,000 and the runner up a trophy and $150,000.
The man-of-the-match in the finals will receive trophies, while the tournament’s MVP in both segments will be given a 14 carat gold diamond encrusted pendant cricket bat valued at $150,000, compliments of Steve’s Jewellery. Outstanding players in the preliminary round games will also be rewarded.
Among the venues indentified are Eve Leary, DCC, Malteenoes, GCC, MYO, GDF and Ogle. On the day of the finals, three ticket holders will stand a chance to win a return trip for two to Baganara Resort, Arrowpoint Resort and Aruwai Resort; this is being funded by Survival Supermarket. Fans will also stand a chance to win hampers and other giveaways; tickets for the finals cost $1,000 and are available at Trophy Stall of Bourda Market, Mike’s Pharmacy, Ramchand’s Auto Spares, 4R, Motor Trend in Enmore, Rohan Auto Spares in Mahaica, Ariel Enterprise, Nauth Motor Spares and Nand Persaud and Co. Ltd in Berbice.
Speaking at the ceremony, Minister of Social Cohesion and Culture, Youth and Sports, Dr. George Norton said he is proud to support the tournament and lauded the GFSCA. He added that such tournament helps to raise the sports profile and boost tourism in Guyana, adding that sports in schools deserve a better place.
“The headmasters and mistresses should ensure that they maintain the playing facilities at schools and pay much interest in sports so students can follow through, but that is lacking in Guyana,” he stated. Dr. Norton said that the entire country stands to benefit from such tournament and is looking forward to a successful one.
President of the GFSCA, Ramchand Ragbeer said the tournament has been a tremendous success with over 3000 fans witnessing the finals for the past two years, and is confident the seventh-edition will be successful. GFSCA Assistant Secretary Treasurer Anil Beharry, former West Indies all-rounder and head of GCA Roger Harper, Ronda Johnson of Rubis Guyana and Ajay Jha of India also made presentations with Jha challenging the GFSCA to take the sport to India; television personality Reyaz Husein chaired the proceedings. Speedboat and Floodlights are the defending Open and Masters champions respectively.
Among the sponsors are Stag, Rubis Guyana, Trophy Stall, Survival Group of Business, Steve’s Jewellery, Clear Waters, Guyana Beverage Company Inc under their Busta brand, Rohan Auto Spares, A and R Jewanram Printery, W J Enterprise, Mike’s Pharmacy and Ramchand’s Auto Spares.
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