CWI’s CEO and Big Man Cricket Organisers differ on ‘need for approval’

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Chief Executive Officer of Cricket West Indies, Johnny Grave, on Friday said the regional governing body for the sport would not give its stamp of approval to any match or event without the prior endorsement of the territorial board in which that match/event is taking place.

There is a brewing situation in Guyana where the Big Man Cricket (BMC) Committee has indicated it does not need approval, based on legal advice, for an Over-45 tournament, set to bowl off today (March 13).

The Guyana Cricket Board (GCB), the local governing body for the sport, has stated that the tournament has not received its approval, noting that “the aligned actions of individuals so interested in hosting such tournament(s) as subverting the role and responsibility of the GCB.”

Grave, commenting on this development, said: “Our position is that all cricket played in Guyana should have either official approval or at least a written no objection from the GCB.”

“The GCB provides CWI with a list of all of their Leagues, Tournaments and Competitions as part of our regulations for approval of cricket in the West Indies. CWI would not approve any match or event that has not received the approval or endorsement of the local Territorial Board.”

However, Raj Singh, Chairman of the BMC, maintained at Friday’s launch that they “do not need the approval of the GCB”, but they did approach the Board in the initial stage to get their “blessings” and “possible partnership” for the private tournament.

A letter to the GCB from Singh’s Attorney-at-Law, Rabi Sukul, stated, “My client did not seek an “approval” from the GCB.”

It went on to say, “My client has no obligation under the provisions of the Guyana Cricket Administration Act 2014 to obtain an ‘approval’ from the GCB as a condition to lawfully conduct the said cricket tournament as notified by GCB.”

On Monday, the GCB in a press release stated, “It should be noted that the GCB finds it highly disturbing that there appears to be continued attempts to conduct Big Man Cricket tournament(s) that is/are Not approved by the GCB. The GCB views the aligned actions of individuals so interested in hosting such tournament(s) as subverting the role and responsibility of the GCB by preparing to organise and manage the purported tournament(s), as well as the probable hosting of a cricket tournament which may attract regional teams.”

The Over-45 tournament which will be played on 25-over per side basis will commence today (March 13) with four matches, weather permitting.

At Imam Bacchus ground in Essequibo, Essequibo Eagles face Royal Rangers from 09:30h, while at Enmore, Real Warriors battle West Demerara Vipers from 13:00h.

The Georgetown Cricket Club, Bourda, will host a double-header from 09:00h; West Bank Warriors battle Jai Hind, followed by Upper Corentyne Rangers against Timothy Masters.

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