THE Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) continues to break new grounds as it strives to develop the game in the Ancient County by securing sponsorship for a proposed fast-bowling clinic.
The club has secured sponsorship from overseas-based Guyanese Medical Doctor, Frank Denbow for the new year.
BCB president Hilbert Foster, who has spearheaded a major restoration of Berbice Cricket since his election in 2018, stated that the board would be organising a series of cricketing clinics as it strives to make sure that every emerging talent is given all the opportunities to develop.
With this in mind, the board would be hosting at least 12 major clinics during 2022 to cater for every aspect of the game including fast-bowling, off-spin, leg-spin, left-arm orthodox, wicket-keeping, batting, fielding, physical fitness and captaincy.
BCB intends to use not only its own coaching staff but former and current Test players who are considered positive role models.
The BCB president stated that Dr Denbow contacted him about three months ago to inform him that he was very impressed with the raw talent of West Indies Under-19 player, Isai Thorne, and he was willing to sponsor a fast-bowling clinic if the board was able to obtain the services of legendary fast bowler Sir Curtly Ambrose.
The BCB president, who is also a Director of Cricket West Indies (CWI), opened discussions with Ambrose, who has indicated that he was available to come after the Under-19 World Cup – where he is the bowling coach – and the England/West Indies series where he is expected to serve as a cricket commentator.
Foster expects the clinic to be held in late March or early April.
The sponsorship is worth $1.3M and will cover the cost of a stipend for Ambrose, accommodation, local transportation, airline ticket, security and meals for a four-day visit.
The packed schedule would include three four-hour clinics, a welcome cocktail, question and answer segment with the youths, an award presentation and farewell ceremony. A trip to the Upper Corentyne area is also being planned.
Foster expressed thanks to Dr Dewbow for his support and noted that the generous doctor donated to the Demerara Cricket Club (DCC) and Queen’s College during a recent visit to Guyana.
Berbice, he noted is known mostly for its spinners but this investment would allow more fast bowlers to come forth, to follow in the footsteps of players like John Trim, Romario Shepherd, Leslaine Lambert, Ray Joseph and Kevin Darlington.
Foster also disclosed that promising fast bowlers from the other counties would be invited to attend the sessions as the objective is to assist Guyana as a whole.
The board would also expand hosting of its social skills seminars across the county to go along with the clinics under the developmental programme.
Ambrose is widely rated as one of the greatest fast bowlers in the history of cricket, taking 405 wickets in 98 Test matches at an average of 21.00 and also 225 wickets from 176 ODI matches at 24.10.
He produced one of the greatest fast-bowling spell versus Australia in 1993 when he took seven wickets for one run at the famous Perth Ground.