The East Coast Cricket Board (ECCB) opened its 10th annual Cricket Academy yesterday with the participants being urged to be good ambassadors for the sport and country by Deputy Vice Chancellor of the University of Guyana Tota Mangar.
Mangar said at the Lusignan Community Centre said that cricket is an important game and sportsmen must strive to maintain a healthy image especially when one is selected to represent a nation.
Mangar also commended the ECCB for maintaining the programme of helping youths, both male and female, for the last decade especially since it meant keeping them, away from the ills of society.
Permanent Secretary within the Ministry of Education, Phulander Kandhi, told the participants, which numbered over 50, of the benefits that can be derived from cricket but most importantly spoke of the mix of academia and sport. Kandhi said the ministry has always been a supporter of cricket in schools disclosing that plans are afoot to ensure that cricket and sport are promoted in schools.
President of the ECCB, Bissoondyal Singh, urged the participants to work hard and not waste the opportunities that are being provided and that will be provided in the future. He also made the suggestion to have Friday afternoons sport re-introduced back in school, especially cricket, which can be considered a national sport.
The programme will cater to the needs of youth between ages 12-16 and will end on August 5. It is being conducted under the theme ‘Healthy Lifestyle and Sports as a Vocation’. Robert ‘Pacer’ Adonis is the Coordinator of the Academy.
The objective of the programme, which will cater to the needs of male and female cricketers, is to instill in the youths the value of sport and academia, the dangers of substance abuse and the knowledge, skills and attitude required to pursue a career in cricket. The programme director is former Senior Master and ECCB Secretary Judister Rampersaud. Hardeo Sattaur, Garvin Nedd and Orin Bailey will be the coaches in charge of the programme.
The lectures for the Academy will be delivered by former West Indies player and coach Roger Harper, Edwin Seeraj, Penelope Harris, Ronald Williams, Claude Raphael, Assistant Commissioner Gavin Primo, who will be delivering a special lecture on the use of the road, S. Anandjit and R. Anandjit.
A range of topics is expected to be discussed including the History of West Indies Cricket, the Laws of Cricket, Scoring, Road Safety, Careers in Cricket, Drugs and Sports, Importance of Education, Food and Nutrition, Leadership and Sportsmanship, HIV and Teenage Sex, Food and Nutrition, Social Etiquette, Formation of Clubs and Discipline.