Director of Sport, Christopher Jones, ceremoniously brought the curtain down on the Malteenoes Sports Club (MSC) Cricket Academy on Friday by urging parents to continue to support their children as they venture into fulfilling lives as athletes.
“On behalf of the honorable Minister of Social Cohesion, Dr. George Norton, I would like to congratulate Malteenoes Sports Club for what they have done. I am impressed by the parents’ dedication but I hope when the school term begins you bring them out to practice or else you will be defeating the purpose,” Jones said.
Jones added that while in every community there may not be a ground for them to play, he pleaded with the parents to put in the effort to take their children to the ground that may be a few blocks away and not let access to a facility be the reason for them turning away from sports.
The Director of Sport added that the youngsters are the new crop of cricketers and it is for this reason the National Sports Commission is committed to the development of cricket and young people’s development.
Jones left the children with a word from his youth days in Essequibo, reminding them of his Grandmother’s saying …“once you are provided with the opportunity, it is expected that you grasp it because when you get older you can look back and remember what you did and not wonder what would have happened if you didn’t.”
President of MSC, Winston Semple, asked those that attended the academy to carry the traits developed from the academy which is running for 26 years into their future while becoming good ambassadors while national coach, Orin Bailey reflected on the performance of the cricketers in the academy.
According to Bailey, on the first day the turnout at 09:00h was 65 but that number grew to 105 at the end of the day. Bailey said that he recognized the academy as a success and exhorted the children to take the knowledge learnt over the two weeks into their everyday lives.
He reminded the children that not all of them will make it to become West Indies players but said that they can still be active around cricket in the form of umpires, scorers, commentators, coaches and in other areas.
MSC awarded some of their attendees for their outstanding efforts with the Most Disciplined according to age groups being Joshua Bollers (Under-10), Shaieb Salim (Under-13), Mitra Dhanraj (Under-17), Shawn Thompson (Under-13), Brandon Corlette (Under-17) and Devina Rampersaud.
Former Guyana youth captain, Shaquille Williams, who is a member of MSC and currently is on a cricket scholarship to the University of the West Indies where he is reading for his degree in Banking and Finance, gave the youths some warm remarks on reaching for the stars, indicating that all good things come to an end. However, he pointed out that while the two weeks might have ended, the lessons learnt such as in etiquette, discipline and other real life lessons will be remembered for a lifetime. He reminded them to work together and achieve goals while carrying some of the same positive attitudes into their future through their homes, communities, schools and other social areas.