The Principal Sponsor of Cricket West Indies, Sandals Resorts International, has come in for high praise from former West Indies player and current TV pundit Daren Ganga for also investing in the sport at the developmental level.
Ganga, who is also head of the Daren Ganga Foundation, was speaking at the awards ceremony for the 2019 Sandals Saint Lucia National Under-19 Cricket Cup this weekend.
Noting that the role of corporate support for young sports men and women is critical to their development, Ganga took time out to recognise Sandals for investing in the sport at the developmental level.
The company also sponsors a similar tournament in Jamaica.
“In today’s world, in the current economic situation, you very rarely find local and regional organisations having the bandwidth to support sport, to sponsor sport, to think about a one Caribbean in the sense of West Indies,” Ganga said.
Sandals you have done it, and I personally congratulate you. You guys have contributed significantly towards the development of our region, towards our cricket and towards memories that we will cherish for a long time.”
Ganga’s view was strongly supported by Saint Lucia’s Minister of Sports Edmund Estephan, who commended Sandals for its support of not just cricket, but several other sporting disciplines in Saint Lucia such as football, tennis and golf.
The Minister urged the young players to maximize the value of such support, and allow it to motivate them to carry on and put their hands up for selection on the West Indies senior cricket teams.
For his part, Managing Director of Sandals Resorts Saint Lucia Winston Anderson assured stakeholders of the company’s commitment to helping where it can.
“With respect to our sponsorship of this event, I can tell you that at Sandals, we are all too aware of the importance of corporate citizens stepping in to provide support for our young citizens. I had said at the launch of the tournament that through this sponsorship we hope to not only raise the profile of the game, but provide a springboard for some of our young players to gain national and ultimately regional selection.”
Gros Islet, led by West Indies youth player Kimani Melius was crowned the 2019 Champions with Babonneau coming in as runners-up. Gros Islet’s Lee Solomon was the big winner taking home a number of awards including MVP of the Finals, Tournament MVP and the award for Most Runs.