Flying High” Participants at the Sandals Foundation High Performance Camp take part in a drill.
(August 24th, 2011 Dickenson Bay) The Sandals Foundation and the West Indies Cricket Board are lavishing high praise on the Ministry of Sports in Antigua for what the two organizations view as tremendous insight and commitment to the development of sports in Antigua and Caribbean by the Antiguan government department.
Speaking ahead of Friday’s closing ceremony of the a High Performance Cricket Camp at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, Sandals Resorts International Eastern Caribbean, Regional Director, Jeremy Jones says that the three organizations have struck a tremendous partnership which has proven to be effective over the last couple of weeks. Close to sixty of the elite Caribbean under-15 cricketers in the Caribbean have been honing their skills at the intense camp aimed at helping to rebuild cricket.
“The Ministry of Sports has proven to be a tremendous partner in this undertaking and we really could not have done it without their invaluable support. We at the Sandals Foundation believe that it is only by coming together that we will be able to solve some of the problems in the region. Whether it is West Indies Cricket, education or poverty. We have to hold our hands together as private sector organizations, non-governmental bodies, and civil society,” comments Jones. Jones continues: “ the Ministry of Sports has been the consummate host.
Jones says that the partnership between the three organizations is essential to the development of cricket in the Caribbean. His comments are embraced by Junie Mitcham ,Head Coach of the Camp at Sir Vivian Richards. “This is perhaps the first time that the young under-15 cricketers in the Caribbean are coming together for such an event. The exposure at such a young age does bode well for better cohesiveness in West Indies cricket as the youngsters are meeting new friends. These two camps are where you will get most of the talent for West Indies Cricket in future years so the team spirit displayed is very vital,” Mitcham remarked.
The Ministry of Sports in Antigua and Barbuda and St Lucia have provided critical support for the camps by providing assistance with venues, transportation and accommodation. Minister of State with responsibility for Sports in Antigua, Senator The Honourable Winston Williams Jr. earlier commented: “The Ministry is pleased to partner with the Sandals Foundation and the West Indies Cricket Board to host the second Cricket Academy in Antigua and Barbuda. Hopefully this programme will have a positive impact on the sport at the national as well as regional levels and we are looking forward to participating actively in the training initiative through the seminar sessions.
The High Performance Camps comprise of cricket skills development sessions and training and life skills sessions. The youngsters have been put through their paces in the fundamentals of batting, bowling, fielding. Off the field they will also be tutored on sportsmanship, the history of West Indies cricket, media relations, healthy lifestyle, mental toughness and game sense among other areas. Antigua is hosting Jamaica, Barbados and the Leeward Islands.
Participants at the Sandals Foundation High Performance Camp pose with coaches and facilitators.