The busy 2019 Berbice cricket season on Thursday last became even more busier with the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) launching the second edition of the Ivan Madray Memorial First Division tournament.
Board President Hilbert Foster who leads an aggressive marketing drive by Guyana’s most active cricket board launched the tournament in the company of Treasurer Dr. Cecil Beharry and sponsor Chandradat Chaitnarine of Laparkan Trading.
Mr. Chaitnarine, a nephew of Ivan Madray is pumping $335, 000 into the tournament which would feature the eleven First Division teams in the Ancient County and they are West Berbice, Blairmont, Police, Tucber Park, Rose Hall Canje, Young Warriors, Albion, RHT Thunderbolt Flour, Port Mourant, Upper Corentyne and Skeldon.
This year’s format would be a T20 knock-out while last year’s edition was played using the hundred balls format. The finals would be played under lights at the Albion Ground. Foster disclosed that players the likes of Shimron Hetmyer, Veerasammy Permaul, Romario Sheperd, Clinton Pestano, Nial Smith, Keon Joseph, Jonathan Foo, Kevlon Anderson, Alex Algoo, Devindra Bishoo, Kevin Umroa, Kevin Sinclair, Anthony Bramble and Gudakesh Motie are expected to feature.
Foster expressed gratitude to Mr. Chintamani for his continued investment in the development of the game and for his commitment to keep the memory of his famous uncle who in 1956 became the third Berbician to play Test cricket after John Trim and the legendary Rohan Khanai, intact.
Madray was followed shortly after by Basil Butcher and Joseph Solomon as the historic Port Mourant Club produced the first five Test cricketers from Berbice.
The BCB President reassured the sponsor that the tournament would be well organised and all funds would be used for the intended purpose. Chintamani, expressed delight at once again teaming up with the BCB as he was satisfied with the 2018 edition of the Ivan Madray Memorial Tournament.
He expressed confidence that the relationship would be strengthened in the future. The Laparkan Executive stated that his famous uncle played a major role in his early development, especially instilling the importance of discipline and education.
Sponsorship of the tournament, Chintamani stated is to pay homage to his role-model, mentor and hero. He praised the outstanding work of the BCB and urged the board to always uphold its high standards.
The tournament is expected to be completed by early December as the BCB strives to complete close to 30 tournaments in 2019 at all levels. Meanwhile, the BCB on the 29th of October would be launching a two-day First Division tournament with sponsorship from beverage giants, Banks DIH Ltd.
For over a decade, no two or three day tournament has been played in Berbice and Foster had committed himself to correcting the situation before his term ends on the 31st of December, this year. The sponsorship deal worth over $2M includes the hosting of anti-suicide and drugs campaign.
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