By Elroy Stephney
SEVEN Secondary Schools in Region 2, including team ‘A’ and ‘B’ from Anna Regina Secondary, are participating in the Ramballi and Mahadeo Inter-Secondary School 30 overs Under-17 cricket competition which was launched last Saturday at the Imam Bacchus ground in Affiance.
The impressive opening ceremony cum march past was witnessed by a wide cross-section of stakeholders, including sponsor Harrischand Ramballi, Member of Parliament Dr Vishwa Mahadeo, Regional Executive Officer Rupert Hopkinson, Secretary of the Essequibo Cricket Board Autto Christiani, overseas-based Guyanese Nizam Kadir of the Mahadeo Foundation of Canada and Charlie Persaud, CEO of Excellence Business Consultancy of the USA, as well as Managing Director of Imam Bacchus Group of Companies, Sam Bacchus, teachers and parents.
Regional Chairman Davenand Ramdatt bowled the first ball to open the tournament on Tuesday. .During his brief presentation, Mr Ramballi expressed delight in partnering with the Mahadeo Foundation, Essequibo Cricket Board, Department of Education and the business community in having such a tournament played in Essequibo.
He disclosed that “cricket needs to be promoted consistently in the county and especially at the grassroots and school levels”.
He added: “I am prepared to make the sacrifices in providing a dream for young and aspiring cricketers.”
He said the concept of staging the competition was first shared with him by Mr Yog Mahadeo – Director of the Mahadeo Foundation and co-sponsor – who has played an instrumental part in organising the competition.
The tournament will now become an annual event with the expectation that players will emerge to play at the National level. Similar sentiments were also expressed by Region 2 REO who gives his unequivocal support including from the level of the RDC.
Meanwhile, the eight teams have been sponsored by business enterprises as follows – Anna Regina Secondary ‘A’ by H. Ramballi General Construction, Anna Regina Secondary ‘B’ by Bhowan’s Machinery Import, Charity Secondary by Dellip Singh of Double ‘D’ Mart, 8th of May Secondary by Excellence Business Consultancy, Cotton Field Secondary by Hyper Sounds, Abram Zuil Secondary by Reaz Sporting Gear, Aurora Secondary by Anna Regina Fire Station and Johanna Cecilia Secondary by Roy’s Seasoning. All the teams have been provided with clothing. Cricket balls and transportation have been made available by the sponsor.
Trophies, medals and cricket gear will be presented at the conclusion of the round-robin competition which will see the teams play each other. The four top teams will qualify for the playoffs.
Matches will be played at several venues including Affiance No.1 ground, Imam Bacchus, Cotton Field and at Reliance. After the final a team will be selected to tour Berbice for a series of matches against their counter-parts.