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PowerGen successes not by guess
PowerGen cricket club recently won the UNICOM UWI T20 title, the first tournament of the domestic cricket season when it defeated a star-studded Cane Farm out from Arouca.
PowerGen came up against the defending champion team in the final and needing two runs off the last ball, skipper Ancil Bhagan clipped Lendl Simmons to deep square leg, ran two and the celebrations started. The win against a side containing the top rated Sunil Narine, Simmons, Rayad Emrit and a host of other national players did not surprise chairman Chaitram Ramjitsingh. "The win did not surprise me because we have a team. The guys, except Evin Lewis may not have the star power, but they played together. The key was keeping my unit together and using a core group of men from the club. Having said that we were also served well by our recruited player in Daron Cruickshank.
"PowerGen cricket club started a development programme way back and the fruits of that is starting to show. We have produced a number of international and regional players right here at Syne Village in Penal. Right now our batsman Jason Mohammed is the Windies vice-captain at the World Cup qualifiers in Zimbabwe. We have also produced the likes of Samuel Badree who at times was rated the number-one slow bowler in the world in T20 cricket. Also playing his cricket right here from a tender age is Lewis. He has gone through the ranks right here at the club and now he is big news on the international scene when it comes to T20 cricket."
Ramjitsingh added that the club's ambitious development programme has produced teams for the Sir Gary Sobers cricket festival in Barbados, which they have been attending for years. To come on stream later this year will be an under-13 team and an under-15 team which is schedule to travel to Miami to play in tournaments there.
Ramjitsingh who played his cricket for Clarke Road many years ago is full of praise for PowerGen. "We have been very fortunate to have the company's backing and they have really taken care of the players down here. They have been very helpful and we have repaid them by producing excellent citizens at the club. The investment in our indoor nets is paying off and this shows the commitment of the company to the youths of T&T. We've worked hard at the club to make life better for the players. We continue to improve and modernise our set-up at Syne Village. In addition to the indoor nets we're now outfitting the space with cameras so that players can analyse their game after batting. We've added a conference room which is used a lot in our planning. Also attached to the indoor building are dormitories for our players who want to stay and also for live-in camps.
"The entire project has been costly and in addition to the generous help from our sponsors PowerGen, we've found novel ways to raise funds for the club because we know that we have a product of value."
CAPTION: This is the plan! Chairman of PowerGen Cricket club using the club's conference room to plan for more success, watched by cricket coach Stephen Ramkissoon.
Cricket in the Penal/Debe region has been spreading like wildfire as more and more teams are coming out to play the sport. With the advent of the T20 format players are returning to the game because they're now available for the short period away from work.
Making major push to get more cricket played in the region is Member of Parliament for Oropouche East Dr. Roodal Moonilal, who has been making a personal investment to assist clubs financially to come back out and play the game. Many clubs that became defunct over the years are now dusting their gears and coming out to play. According to Moonilal,"We need the totally occupy the youths so that they don't get into deviant behaviour. When young men are restless they can get up to all kinds of mischief and this we must avoid. We need to get them involved in meaningful activities and sport is one of the major ones. I have decided to do my part to ensure that as many clubs come forward so that the youths will be engaged.
"I remember when I was a young man I played sport, but not at any big level, as my studies occupied most of my time, but at the end of the day I was doing something meaningful. I had to be occupied most of the times and the same goes for the young men in society today. We talk about crime and trying to find ways to deal with it and one of the ways is to use sport as we did when we were in government with the Hoop of Life programme."
Last week. Moonilal brought on yet another team to play cricket, this time Debe Daredevils and they have already gotten a number of members signing up to play.
The Badree's Academy of Sport Education continued its programme to develop the youth of our nation when it resumed it's operations recently at it's Powergen Penal base. With over 100 boys and girls registered for the 10 month programme, the Academy seeks to promote healthy lifestyles and holistic development through the sport of cricket. The Academy runs every Monday from 4 pm to 5.30pm and Saturdays from 9 am to 10 am and caters for boys and girls from the age of five to 15 years old. BASE is chaired by West Indian cricketer Samuel Badree and has on its staff qualified and experienced coaches who are passionate about youth development. Badree reinforced the need for such programmes especially in light of the absence of activities to keep young people meaningfully engaged. "BASE is committed to providing opportunities to young boys and girls to develop their physical and cricketing abilities as well as their social and interpersonal skills. We would like to thank our sponsors TECU, Powergen and TGU, who have partnered with us to ensure the programme is accessible to all children no matter what their financial situation is," Badree added.
On Saturday BASE played a practice match against the San Francique Presbyterian School at Powergen Penal. The match was keenly contested as BASE came away as victors . There was also a Financial Literacy and Management Seminar held with parents keeping in mind the economic challenges facing the country. This was conducted by Ricardo Albert from TECU.
San Francique Presbyterian School 83/6 in 15 overs (Ryan Supersad 17, Travis Mansingh 9, Kyle Mahadeo 2-17, Roberto Badree 1-13 Rayad Khan 1-8, Sajiv Ghuran 2-5) vs BASE 89/4 (Terrell Knutt 18, Mickel Sookdeo 10, Joshau Deonath 1-7)
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