Minister of Sports Anil Roberts in a stirring feature address to mark the official opening of the Regional T20 cricket series on Sunday, called on the West Indies team to go for success at the Test level.
Roberts lauded the sensational performance by the West Indies team which won the ICC World T20 in Sri Lanka last year and also called for continued support of West Indies cricket at all levels.
“We are delighted to welcome everyone to Trinidad for the Caribbean T20. The crowd will be loud in support of the Red Force, but we will also support all the teams because we all love cricket in the region.
“Congrats to the WICB and to captain Darren Sammy and the West Indies team. Well done to everyone—to the players, the coaches, the managers—who performed at the World T20 to bring pride back to West Indies cricket,” Roberts said.
“We are the champions at the ‘Primary School’ level, after winning the T20 World Cup. I would like to see us become champions at the ‘Secondary School’ level which is the 50-overs tournament, and then we must strive to be ‘University’ champions which is Test cricket.
“We have abundant talent in the region and it is good to finally see that this talent is being properly harnessed and bringing the results we want. We will continue to give all the backing as a government to the development of sport be it cricket, football, hockey, swimming or any other sports. We will do our part here in Trinidad to get West Indies cricket right where it rightfully belongs and that time should be soon.”
Meanwhile, Michael Muirhead, CEO of the WICB, hailed the organisers of the tournament for their hard work and also the Government of Trinidad and Tobago for its continued commitment to the game of cricket.
“The WICB has invested heavily in this tournament, particularly in the television broadcast, to ensure fans throughout the Caribbean and other parts of the world can see, live and in living colour via ESPN, the tremendous talent which is in our region,” Muirhead told the audience.
“We are not lacking or wanting for talent in the Caribbean. The evidence vindicates this statement. In the next two weeks here in Trinidad and in St Lucia, we will have some of the finest players in the world competing in this tournament, entertaining us and showcasing the most exciting brand of cricket anywhere.” (VM)