The West Indies Cricket Board hosted its regular quarterly meeting this past weekend in Antigua wherein a few key reports were received and decisions taken. Of note, is the hosting of a Charity T20 benefit game in Barbados to raise funds for Dominica after the effects of Tropical Storm Erika and prolonged rainfall since. The proposed date is Saturday, September 26, at Kensington Oval in Barbados.
The teams will be drawn from the West Indies team preparing for the Tour of Sri Lanka and a combination of legends and other sports personalities. Brian Lara continues to do his role in assisting Dominica by making himself available for the game. Also confirmed for the game is his close friend Manchester United legend, Dwight Yorke and Jamaican track star Yohan Blake. Presumably, Blake is still in talks to get Usain Bolt, who fancies himself a brilliant fast bowler, to also make an appearance.
This game is expected to be telecast and a telethon will form part of the activities to raise funds as well as a basket for donations will be passed throughout the crowd.
The WICB also agreed to a new commercial strategy for West Indies cricket which they hope will improve revenue inflows after a presentation by sports marketing agency, Pitch International, a company who market themselves as the leading distributor of sports broadcasting rights in the world. Pitch International also boasts Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs, the Brazilian and English FA's and the New Zealand cricket team, among their clients.
With a bill of upward of US $40m potentially owed to the Cricket Board of India, the WICB will indeed be grateful if this commerical strategy results in an influx of new revenue for the region's favourite game.
It was also revealed that the surplus for the operating year is expected to be in the region of US $2m, a far cry from what would be needed.
A report on the Economic Impact of the tour of the England team this year along with various recommendations for based on reviews of recent performances by the West Indies men’s and women’s teams, the high performance programme, regional age group and women’s tournaments, as well as coaching and development programmes were also tabled.
Local cricket fans will get the opportunity to ask more about these initiatives as well as put forth their own recommendations and questions when the WICB host the long awaited Town Hall meeting scheduled for Trinidad and Tobago on September 25, 2015 from 7 pm in the auditorium of the Chaguanas Borough Corporation.