Cricket fraternity not close to herd immunity association head reveals

The CUB Bethesda Golden Eagles (pictured) defeated Anderson Carty Empire Nation in the final of the ABCA Super 40 Competition in February. (File photo)
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By Neto Baptiste

Hopes of achieving herd immunity within the cricket fraternity here in Antigua could take some time.

This is according to President of the Antigua and Barbuda Cricket Association (ABCA), Leon Rodney, who said that when the body asked clubs to provide their vaccination numbers in May, the highest percentage of fully vaccinated members for any single team was below 20 percent.

“When we did it at the time, the highest number was 17 percent of a club out of all of the clubs we would have spoken to, 17 percent at that time,” he said.

“What we will hope is either the teams are fully vaccinated or by that time we would have reached herd immunity, and so there is no issue because from my understanding, and not unless I am getting it wrong, but once you have reached herd immunity then some people are just not going to be vaccinated because that’s just how it works,” he added. 

The association, on Wednesday, issued a statement officially ruling out any competitive play for the rest of the year. The body pointed to the government stipulation that mandates that all athletes partaking in competition be fully vaccinated.

The cricket association has however led the fight for the return of competition and was the first association to put on a tournament since the March 2020 when they staged the 10 Splash Tournament in December last year.

Rodney, when asked if he will be seeking re-election during the body’s electoral congress in November, said he is willing to serve another term at the helm.

“Given the circumstances at the moment, I think I have no alternative but to serve one more term if asked to. Hopefully, that time I should be a full certified level three coach and obviously that would give me the opportunity to then move on to what we have been talking about for a little while,” he said.

The ABCA had planned to stage its Sir Richie Richardson Under-17 Tournament in August given that, at the time, individuals under the age of 18 were not being targeted for vaccination. The government however mandated that all players be tested before the start of the tournament and that all officials be fully vaccinated.

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