A new era for cricket in schools across the CARICOM region is about to begin with an innovative initiative from the CARICOM Secretariat called the “Pitch in Schools Project”, the Guyana-based Caribbean Community Headquarters said in a statement.
The project will pioneer fresh innings for primary and secondary schools with a proven cricketing background, by providing them with an opportunity to vie for the construction of cricket net facilities or an upgrade to such facilities where they already exist.
The proposal will provide a means through which the infrastructure and facilities available in schools across the region can be developed as a step towards the improvement of cricket in schools.
According to a plan that was developed by Deputy Programme Manager for Sports at the CARICOM Secretariat, John Campbell, the objectives of this project are to promote and facilitate quality participation and training in cricket and to generate greater interest and increased playing time in the sport through improved facilities. The aim is to ensure that school cricket teams (both boys and girls) have adequate quality training facilities to develop skills and the capacity to compete at a high level at national and regional age group tournaments (Under 11-19).
It is expected that coming out of this project, improved infrastructure and facilities will promote further participation in the sport from youngsters across the CARICOM region. It is also envisioned that there will be year round access to training facilities through the presence of an all-weather practice surface and subsequently, an increase in the pool of cricket talent in the region as a result of greater practice and training options.
The CARICOM Secretariat and the West Indies Cricket Board have collaborated extensively in the shaping of this initiative. This will no doubt be an excellent opportunity for regional sponsors to join in and become a part of this innovative course that is being charted for the development of cricket in the Region and perhaps most promisingly, the resurgence of West Indies Cricket.