By Neto Baptiste
President of the Antigua and Barbuda Cricket Association (ABCA), Leon Rodney, is hoping to forge a more meaningful relationship with the country’s sports ministry as he seeks to improve the quality of development and or youth competitions on offer.
The disclosure comes on the heels of the cricket association’s annual general meeting and elections slated for May 19 in the conference room at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
“We have been playing age cricket tournament almost every year except for last year when we had the pushback from the government. Is a tournament good enough? Maybe no, but the discussions we have been having with the ministry is something that we have to continue to hope that the ministry would understand what it is we want to do. We don’t have coaches and when we bring in coaches then obviously they start looking about monies and so forth. If not all, majority of the coaches work for the ministry … we can put a training programme together because we have the facilities where these players can come at least three days per week, but it is my belief that it has to be in consultation with the people at the Ministry of Sports,” he said.
Rodney is expected to go unchallenged during Thursday night’s elections as he seeks a third term in office.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, the administrator pointed to the association’s ability to come out of the Covid-19 pandemic hosting a string of local and international matches speaks volumes to the capability of the executive.
“To get cricket back on the road after, or even during the pandemic, I think the association has to be given some kind of credit, and to take the final up to the CCG [Coolidge Cricket Ground] where people enjoyed themselves and had a real good set of matches, I just think it was very good. I think the players were quite satisfied in playing in that atmosphere and they could not have gotten a better outfield in Antigua to play on at that time, so I think that would be a highlight. It would be remiss of me if I did not give the association a whole lot of credit to have hosted all those international matches during the pandemic,” he said.
Thursday night’s meeting is slated to start at 7pm. All clubs will have one vote with individual members also having the right to vote once for each position up for election.