By Sean Devers
The Demerara Cricket Club (DCC) was formed in 1912 and is known as the home of Legends having produced greats like Maurice Fernandes (first West Indies Captain win a Test), Clive Lloyd, Roy Fredericks, Lance Gibbs, Roger Harper and Guyana’s newest Test player Kemo Paul.
And yesterday at their club House in Queenstown, with a cadre of influential Guyana seated at the Head Table, they held the closing Ceremony of its annual cricket Academy which ran for two weeks and accommodated 110 enthusiastic youngsters including two Girls, divided into groups of U-13 and 13-18.
After 10 days of hard work, learning skills of cricket on the field and lots of important topics indoors by coaches Mark Harper, Garvin Nedd, Darian Best, Clyde Butts, Shawn Massiah, Kevin Ross, Tevin Imlach and Reon King and a host of motivating facilitators. Joshua Reddy took home the Roy Fredericks Trophy for being adjudged the Most improved batsman, while Arif Bacchus was presented with the Lance Gibbs Trophy for being the most improved bowler in the 13-18 age group.
The others to receive trophies in the 13-18 category were; Mark Sharma (best fielder) got the Roger Harper Trophy, Nicholas Samaroo (best Keeper) had the Darwin Christian trophy, Idris Allen (Best Class room student) got the Fred Wills trophy, Mitra Dhanraj (most disciplined student) had the M.P Fernandes trophy and Jaydon Alves (Most Valuable Participant) got Clive Lloyd trophy.
In the U-13s, Lomar Seecharran (Best batsman), Michal Sharma (best bowler), Lebrun Burns (best fielder), Qvon Torrington (best Keeper), Ephraim Mingo (Best Class room student), Deane Hughes (most disciplined student) and Ryan Sadiek took the top honours.
After Pastor Troy Parris started the ceremony with a Prayer, DCC’s executive Reginald Brotherson gave the opening remarks and introduced the speakers after the National Pledge was recited.
Technical Director of the Academy Mark Harper told of what transpired during the 10 days and thanked all who contributed to the event which was sponsored by 23 Business entities and individuals including Banks DIH, Noble House Sea Foods, Ansa McAl Trading, Department of Public Service, Ministry of the Presidency, Bulkan Timer works, ARK Container House, Star Party Rentals, 4-R Bearings, Mikes Pharmacy, Regal Stationary and Computer House, Elegance Jewellery & Pawn Shop, De Sinco Trading, P&P Insurance Brokers, Ramchand Auto Spares, Goodwood Racing Service and Guyana Geology and Mines Commission.
Troy Peters from Banks DIH spoke on behalf of the sponsors and Banks DIH applauds DCC hosting the Cricket Camp, while DCC’s President Roger Harper thanked his team and the parents and guardians for their support.
The Head, in the first year of his two-year term at the helm, told the packed upper flat of DCC that this was the end of this programme but it is the start of a new chapter in their lives.
He was high in praise for the work of Nedd who has been responsible for producing many of the players who have gone on for Guyana and the West Indies.
Minister Harmon told the gathering that he was here as the Patron of the club and as the Minister of State and also congratulated DCC for hosting the Camp.
“Leadership is very important since when you are winning everyone in the team is there with but when you are doing well leadership can be a very lonely place,” Harmon said.
The Politician spoke about discipline and informed that a healthy life style leads to a successful life. Minister Harmon urged that the participants to not get boastful or arrogant when they become successful, adding that it important to look after themselves and not drink and go to night clubs and not forsake rest and still expect to do well on the field the next day.
“I only realised recently that a PAY-TRON has to pay” Minister Harmon said with a laugh but added that he was told by Roger Harper that some work is needed to be done on the ground.
“I will donate my $250,000 increase next month to DCC to help with the ground,” Harmon promised.
He also stressed that communication is very important since if you do well the foreign reporters will ask you questions and if you don’t answer properly you could embarrass yourself and your Country.
Assistant Director of Sports Melissa Dow-Richardson spoke on several topics in a very informative feature address.
The NSC official spoke about being a sports Professional and told the youths that the definition of sports Professional is a skilled and talented sportsman or woman who is paid to compete in a chosen Sport.
“Such professionals usually start at an early age, join a club and receive instructions and training, many times be spotted by talent scouts. Such professionals are persons with dedication and potential to succeed who also benefits from sponsorships and scholarships,” Dow-Richardson explained.
“Therefore to be a professional one must have commitment, self-discipline, dedication, excellent physical fitness, stamina and the ability to cope with considerable psychological pressure,” added the NSC representative.
She said that all these functionalities require the maintenance of a health drug free body. You must avoid Cigarettes, Alcohol, marijuana and Cocaine as well as performance enhancing drugs.
Former Prime Minister, Minister of Sports and Mayor of Georgetown, Hamilton Green told those present that leadership entails making bold decisions and asked who knew what was Burnham magic in cricket. Few in the building knew what that was.
Green, who still have a remarkable memory at his age, said that Lloyd was in Australia playing club cricket and the club there did not want to release him to play for Guyana.
But the then President of Guyana, got Lloyd to leave to play against Trinidad at Bourda but when he reached Trinidad they tried to delay him there. Burnham sent a GDF helicopter to pick up at the airport and he landed at Cuffy Square and he was escorted by police outriders to Bourda. He was declared in the team but got there after lunch and had to bat as soon as he reached the ground. Lloyd and Alvin Kallicharran featured in a record stand and Lloyd was appointed West Indies Captain, all because of Burnham’s leadership.
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