…Action bowls off today
“FROM the Ministry’s point of view, we have been working very closely with the Guyana Floodlight Softball Cricket Association (GFSCA) and we have seen over the years that they have really worked hard to develop softball in Guyana, for which we commend them.”Those were the words of Minister of Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony, who was delivering the feature remarks at the opening ceremony for the GFSCA’s ‘Guyana Cup 111,’ held at the Georgetown Cricket Club pavilion last night.
Dr. Anthony reflected on how the Association was formed, wherein a group of friends/businessmen volunteered their time and put their own resources into the sport and over the years it has grown to what is seen taking place today.
“We would like to commend them for the work they have been doing, wherein they have all been volunteering and putting their own resources to this, and over those many years, we have seen it grown from a friendly game to one that is more organized.
Not only here in Guyana, but I am very pleased to hear that not only were they bringing teams from New York, Miami and Canada to come and play here, but also they themselves have been going out there and competing and it shows the power of sports,” stated Dr. Anthony.
Dr. Anthony reminded his audience which included GFSCA’s president, Ramchand Ragbeer, and vice president and Coordinator of the ‘Guyana Cup 111,’ Ricky Deonarine, that only through sports and exercise can non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, be avoided.
“Sport is one of those mediums where we can bring people together, and I know in this particular tournament, that is not only the younger people who will be playing as many of the guys who will be involved, will have that zest and wish to be a part and want to win.
It shows that you can be of any age and still be involved in sports and it’s even more involved as we grow older, that we stay actively involved in sports and if softball cricket can supply that avenue whereby we can exercise, I think it is a very good thing, as it helps fight non-communicable diseases.”
According to Dr. Anthony, efforts were being made to play the finals of this tournament at the Guyana National Stadium, but the logistics were not put in place in time, but come next year when the Ministry will be partnering with the GFSCA, there is a possibility that the finals would be played under lights at that venue.
He further mentioned the installation of lights at the Albion Community Centre ground in Berbice, which should be completed by this year end, and charged the GFSCA’s executive body to play a few matches in the Ancient County.
In closing, Dr. Anthony who took time out from his Parliamentary duties to honor a commitment made early last month, applauded the GFSCA for organizing a wonderful and successful tournament two years ago, while he charged the players to play the game fairly and respect the umpire’s decision.
In his welcome remarks, Ragbeer also asked the teams both local and foreign to play the game in good spirit, remember the umpire’s decision is final while he wished all 26 teams who will be competing in two categories, best of luck, even as Deonarine reiterated Dr. Anthony and Ragbeer by asking the players to let the game be played fairly.
Each team will play 3 preliminary matches in ‘Guyana Softball Cup 111,’ with two matches on today, and one tomorrow morning, from which the semifinalists will be decided for each category and played after lunch tomorrow.
Grounds to be used today and tomorrow are: Police Sports Club, Demerara Cricket Club, GCC, St. Stanislaus, Ministry of Education (formerly Softball ground), Muslim Youth Organisation (MYO) and YMCA grounds.
The final will be held at the GCC ground, Bourda, on Sunday and will be preceded by three female 10/10 exhibition matches involving Trophy Stall Angels, 4R Lioness, Karibee Girls, and Mike’s Wellwoman.
All the teams were drawn into zones in their respective categories and handed fixtures last night and the zones with teams are Open 20/20 are: Zone A: South Florida Softball Cricket League, Regal, Wolf Warriors, Smith XI
Zone B: New York Softball Cricket League All Stars, Cotton Field Wild Oats, Corriverton, Farm X1
Zone C: Ontario Softball Cricket League, Berbice Titans, Karibee Boyz, Trophy Stall.
And for the Guyana Softball Cup 111 Masters 20/20
Zone A: New York Better Hope, Brooklyn Legends, Savage, Floodlights.
Zone B: SCI Miami, New York President X1, Regal Masters, Industry Super Kings.
Zone C: New York Seaview, Ontario Masters Softball International, Wellman X1
Zone D: New York Softball Cricket League Legends, Parika Defenders, Superior Woods Success Masters.
(By Calvin Roberts)