By Sean Devers
Yesterday at the Marriott Hotel in Kingston, the Guyana Amazon Warriors gained a new sponsor as ExxonMobil has come on board for the fifth edition of the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) which starts in St. Lucia on Wednesday and climaxes with the final on September 16 in Trinidad.
The US Oil Exploration Company, which has discovered Oil offshore, officially launched their collaboration with the Guyanese Franchise as title sponsor for the Warriors, who begin their campaign at Providence on Thursday (Aug 9) against the Chris Gayle led St Kitts Patriots.
Team Operations Manager of the Guyana Amazon Warriors, Omar Khan said the IPL and Big Bash leagues are funded by nations with huge populations adding that it’s imperative the CPL gets important corporate assistance. ExxonMobil’s partnership has been a great help to the franchise Khan added.
“The whole cricketing world has transformed; the cricketing landscape has transformed. Cricket is now big business. Cricket is an industry. Sport is an industry,” the Trinidadian Khan explained.
“As an industry, we need to set up systems and structures in place where we could sustain our level of participation and, as Rod said, presenting and being ambassadors of our country; In order for us to do that, we need corporate sponsors to come on board.
We want to thank them sincerely. We want to show them that we appreciate their sponsorship very much, and we’re going to let you know that this sponsorship is not just about the ExxonMobil logo on our shirts. We’re going to make ExxonMobil proud by doing other things within Guyana and the Caribbean and throughout the cricketing world to make ExxonMobil proud of their sponsorship of the Guyana Amazon Warriors,” Khan said.
Responding to Khan, Rod Henson, ExxonMobil Country Manager, told the large gathering that he was confident that the South American Franchise can win its first title this year.
“We have a really solid team. I’ve already been talking to the team about our chances and I really think that it’s going to be a fantastic year,” said Henson.
“I know you would be fantastic ambassadors for the sport, and for ExxonMobil and for the Amazon Warriors and I wish you all the best of luck…and I can’t wait for Thursday,” Henson added.
Cameron Deport will miss the first four games and has been replaced by South African born Chris Green, while Chadwick Walton and Kemo Paul who are with the Windies in Florida for this weekend’s T20 against Bangladesh and will arrive by Tuesday while the others were scheduled to commence practice at Providence yesterday evening.
Warriors players, dressed in their new uniforms with the ExxonMobil logo boldly plastered on the front of their shirts, the Media, Secretary of CGI Ananad Sanasie, Director of Sports Chris Jones and ExxonMobil officials were at yesterday’s launching.
“We’ve got five games here this season. I hope everybody comes out. We’ve got two playoff games as well and I know we would absolutely be represented in the playoffs as well and go all the way. It’s going to be music and food and excitement and fun,” a pumped up Henson said.
The Country Manager informed, that ExxonMobil’s association with the franchise last year was fantastic, adding that the company is looking forward to greater things this year.
“Cricket is part of the heritage here; it unites people no matter what’s going on, whether it’s in politics or your social life,” Henson pointed out.
The American said one of the reasons that ExxonMobil is very happy to partner with the Amazon Warriors is that they have a long-standing and excellent tradition of being a good corporate citizen.
“You guys have done over the years many things in terms of mentoring young men and women and motivational speaking and visiting schools and really that’s fantastic. Not all of us or nearly none of us can hit a century or play cricket the way these folks do, but something that we all can do is come together to support communities,” Henson stressed.
Guyana Amazon Warriors Team will come from: Shoaib Malik (captain), Sohail Tanvir, Chadwick Walton, Chris Green, Reyad Emrit, Imran Tahir, Jason Mohammed, Luke Ronchi, Veerasammy Permaul, Roshan Primus, Shimron Hetmyer, Devendra Bishoo, Gajanand Singh, Sherfane Rutherford, Romario Shepherd, Kemo Paul, Saurabh Netravalkar and Akshaya Persaud.
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