By Sean Devers
Yesterday, at the Marriott Hotel in Kingston, Hero Caribbean Premier CPL’s Chief Operations Officer (COO) Pete Russell announced that the two play-off games involving the top four teams will be played at the Providence Stadium on September 11 &12 commencing from 18:00hrs each evening.
The deal to host the play-off games here was inked between Minister of State Joe Harmon and the CPL. Russell confirmed that the Guyana Government did not have to pay any hosting fee which was the case for the Islands hosting the play-offs and finals during the previous five years of the biggest party in Sports.
Guyana Amazon Warriors, who have reached the play-off every year since 2013 when the CPL was inaugurated, will play five preliminary games, one more than the four they played here last year. Seven matches will be played for the first time on South American soil.
According the CPL’s COO, when asked why the Sports Minister Dr George Norton claimed he had not received any correspondence from CPL regarding the Hosting Agreement contract, Russell said that he never spoken to Minister Norton.
“CPL and the Guyana Government have an excellent relationship and Minister Harmon played an instrumental role in ensuring the games were played here. The delay in announcing the home games were due to going through the process for the games to be played here. We knew months ago that seven games would have been played in Guyana,” disclosed Russell.
Russell confirmed that the USA, where for the third successive year, matches will be played in Florida, and Trinidad, wanted the Play-offs and Final to be played in those Countries this year. Trinidad will host the 2018 finals.
The decision to host the Play-offs in Guyana was due to the large fan base here, which Russell says, is more than Trinidad and Florida.
“So it was a no brainer” said Russell, who informed that CPL is second to the IPL in India in terms of the biggest T20 League in the World.
“The big Bash in Australia is also big but CPL’s brand is a destination for the biggest Party in Sports and more fan engagement. This year the Catch for Cash is back in addition to a lot of off the field entertainment,” Russell said.
The ICC has suggested that players be limited to no more than three T20 Leagues and Russell agreed saying that he feels only full ICC members should be allowed to hold T20 Leagues; referring the most recent tournament is Canada.
“It’s up to the players to chose where they want to go but I feel there should be payment cap since places like the West Indies will find it difficult to pay players exuberant sums of money. We have worked with Cricket Windies to plan the CPL during a window period when their players will be available. Last year the tournament clashed with England Test series,” Russell stated.
He added that the CPL is seen on TV by Millions and the emphasis is more on the local players this year and the opportunity for selection to the IPL is bigger now.
Russell said the Guyana Franchise has been blessed with Fantastic support where the passion for cricket is second to none.
“We are delighted to be able to bring such significant matches and we are sure the fans will turn out in large numbers,” pointed out Russell.
Russell was high in praise for the Minister Harmon’s role and noted that the GOG was very pleased to reward the Guyanese fans by hosting these matches.
Fixtures: Guyana games highlighted.
August 8 – Trinbago Knight Riders v St Lucia Stars, Trinidad
August 9 – Guyana Amazon Warriors v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, Providence
August 10 – Trinbago Knight Riders v Jamaica Tallawahs, Trinidad
August 11 – Guyana Amazon Warriors v St Lucia Stars, Providence
August 11 – Trinbago Knight Riders v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, Trinidad
August 12 – Guyana Amazon Warriors v Barbados Tridents, Providence
August 14 – Jamaica Tallawahs v St Lucia Stars, Jamaica
August 15 – Jamaica Tallawahs v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, Jamaica
August 16 – St Lucia Stars v Trinbago Knight Riders, St Lucia
August 17 – St Lucia Stars v Barbados Tridents, St Lucia
August 18 – Jamaica Tallawahs v Guyana Amazon Warriors, Lauderhill, Florida
August 19 – Jamaica Tallawahs v Trinbago Knight Riders, Lauderhill, Florida
August 21 – St Lucia Stars v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, St Lucia
August 22 – Jamaica Tallawahs v Barbados Tridents, Lauderhill, Florida
August 24 – St Lucia Stars v Guyana Amazon Warriors, St Lucia
August 25 – Barbados Tridents v St Kitts & Nevis Patriots, Barbados
August 25 – St Lucia Stars v Jamaica Tallawahs, St Lucia
August 26 – Barbados Tridents v Trinbago Knight Riders, Barbados
August 28 – St Kitts & Nevis Patriots v Guyana Amazon Warriors, St Kitts
August 29 – Barbados Tridents v Jamaica Tallawahs, Barbados
August 30 – St Kitts & Nevis Patriots v St Lucia Stars, St Kitts
August 31 – Barbados Tridents v Guyana Amazon Warriors, Barbados
September 1 – St Kitts & Nevis Patriots v Trinbago Knight Riders, St Kitts
September 2 – Barbados Tridents v St Lucia Stars, Barbados
September 2 – St Kitts & Nevis Patriots v Jamaica Tallawahs, St Kitts
September 4 – St Kitts & Nevis Patriots v Barbados Tridents, St Kitts
September 5 – Trinbago Knight Riders v Guyana Amazon Warriors, Trinidad
September 6 – Trinbago Knight Riders v Barbados Tridents, Trinidad
September 8 – Guyana Amazon Warriors v Jamaica Tallawahs, venue Providence
September 9 – Guyana Amazon Warriors v Trinbago Knight Riders, Providence
September 11 – Playoff 1 (1st v 2nd), Providence
September 12 – Playoff 2 (3rd v 4th), Providence
September 14 – Semi-final (Playoff 2 winner v Playoff 1 loser), Trinidad
September 16 – Final, Trinidad
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