The T&T Cricket Board (TTCB) is saying that they should have gotten the option of running the Brian Lara Cricket Stadium in Tarouba and not any committee set up by any government agency.
President of the TTCB, Azim Bassarath said that the TTCB is not happy about the snub sent their way, as he thinks that they are the best suited to run the affairs of cricket in the country. “We are the best people to run the cricket and to develop cricket in the country, so I can’t understand why we were not given the opportunity to be involved. The TTCB has an impressive track record in running the cricket and this should have been taken into account. Remember back in 1998 when one of the Test matches against England was abandoned in Jamaica, we were able to put together a Test match here in a couple of days.”
Added to the facility will be the Brian Lara cricket academy and chairman of the SPORTT Michael Phillips said the decision was in no way political interference in the operations of cricket in T&T but SPORTT had a responsibility to ensure that it encouraged the development of talent throughout the country.
He said: “We have no intentions of running cricket. The fact is any organisation can set up a cricket academy or provide training for cricketers so we are not usurping the functions of the TTCB.
“What I will also say is if you look at many of the sporting bodies in T&T you realise there is a need for greater balance and there are times when they are accused of having a vested interest in certain athletes and not others. We want to ensure all talent rises to the top.”
This did not sit too well with Bassarath who said that the TTCB should have been consulted just as the other NSOs have been in terms of the National Aquatic Centre, the cycling velodrome and the national tennis centre. He said he cannot remember the board being invited to send in a proposal to be part of the set up at the Lara Stadium and this was unfortunate.
He added though that the present situation will in no way affect regional or Test cricket being played at the venue. “We have a responsibility to the fans in this country and we will try our best to get top class cricket at the venue.” The TTCB has to bid for international matches and they are in control of regional matches and would then have to negotiate with the authorities running the facility to host matches there.