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Report highlighting the current state and future prospects of West Indies Cricket to be submitted to CARICOM Heads

Friday 3 May 2024 (CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown): Dr the Hon. Keith Rowley, Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, announced that a report will be compiled on the future growth of West Indies Cricket when Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads meet in July in Grenada. This report will provide a comprehensive and reliable assessment of the current state and future prospects of West Indies Cricket.

The Prime Minister shared this during the media briefing at the end of the two-day CARICOM Regional Cricket Conference held in Trinidad and Tobago from 25-26 April. He underscored that the dialogue and interaction at the conference revealed that cricket remains “a symbol of regional unity.” This unity, he emphasized, is not just a symbolic gesture but a shared responsibility that has the commitment of CARICOM leaders.

The 47th Regular Meeting of the Conference of CARICOM Heads of Government will be held in St George’s, Grenada from 3-5 July.

Confronting the Elephant in the Room

Dr Rowley emphasized that the existence of a cricket subcommittee indicates that the game is of the utmost priority to the Region’s management.

The Prime Minister said that CARICOM leaders have been “feeling this pressure of wanting to do something about this super delayed initiative, and we’ve come to the conclusion that we need to confront the elephant in the room.”

“And I think that’s what this conference was meant to do, bring all the stakeholders together – so that their facets and their vantage points could be expressed to everybody else. All stakeholders will know what other people are thinking, what recommendations are coming from what other quarters, how secure or how useful, how “facilitatory” your area is,” he added.

Cooperative action for change

The Prime Minister said that the common thread that pulls it together “is that no one facet, no one aspect of this legacy can save itself.  We need to have some severe, cooperative action to bring about the necessary change. And a lot of the conversation in the last 48 hours had to do with a governance structure, which obviously does not appear to be the best for the delivery that we anticipate.”

Dr Rowley said he expects that some quarters will respond by saying, “Well, change it elsewhere, but don’t change it by me. Have someone else do it, but I won’t be doing it.”

“That is not going to get us anywhere. [……] we will seek to have a whole programme in conjunction with Cricket West Indies to come up with a smaller group of recommendations and a “can-do” list and time-frames,” he added.

Dr the Hon. Keith Rowley discusses outcomes from CARICOM Regional Cricket Conference – April 2024

Hon. Mia Mottley, Prime Minister of Barbados, told the gathering that her intention for attending the two-day meeting was “to give people the opportunity to speak, to share, and to see where we can find common purpose, and to see where we can build trust.”

She told stakeholders that she is comforted that the regional conference has resulted in “not just the will to do it, but the makings of a framework that allows us to see progress.”

 “This is about the development of our people”

Prime Minister Mottley underscored also that while this issue is about cricket, fundamentally, it is about national and regional development.

“This is about the development of our people at the very time when our young people are being threatened with all other kinds of distractions, some wholesome, some not wholesome. And, we, therefore, need to put the structures and the investment in place as a matter of urgency,” stated the Prime Minister, “I do feel that Cricket West Indies and the territorial boards can start a conversation so that by the time we reach Heads, there is clarity as to what they are united upon and what they are still divided upon with respect to the governance aspect.”

Restoring the Region’s global dominance in cricket

Prime Minister Mottley ended with a call to restore the Region’s global dominance in cricket, “I do not know of any sportsman or artiste who has reached the top of their craft who is not a global citizen. We are one of the smallest regions in the world, but we know global excellence, and it is for us now to ensure that having known it, we can regain it and sustain it.”

Hon. Mia Mottley, Prime Minister, Barbados discusses restoring Region’s global dominance in cricket

Helpful links:

The Wehby Report on Governance Reform of Cricket West Indies

CARICOM Regional Cricket Conference – Official web page

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