GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC): The Vice-President of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), Emmanuel Nanthan, says regional governments are not doing enough to support the development of cricket in the region. Nanthan’s declaration comes as the Dave Cameron-led WICB and CARICOM appear to remain at loggerheads over a recommendation calling for the dissolution of the board by a review panel setup by CARICOM and the WICB. The WICB appears to be preparing for a legal battle with CARICOM to resist the recom-mendations of the Review panel by hiring Dominican lawyer Anthony Astaphan. Nanthan is insisting that the problems with West Indies cricket have little to do with WICB’s governance, but a lack of resources from regional governments to fund training. “It costs the WICB about US$1 million to train a cricketer from the Under-15 level to the elite level in international cricket,” said Nanthan, a sports administrator for the past 20 years. “Eighty-seven per cent of all amounts spent by the Windwards and Leewards in age group tournaments is represented by accommodation costs, air and sea travel costs and the cost of meals for players who are away from their homes. No wonder on an annual basis the Windwards and Leewards are always at the bottom of the table in the early rounds of the regional competition.” A recent meeting in Grenada between CARICOM prime ministers and a WICB delegation to discuss the panel’s governance report made little progress except for an agreement for future meetings. WICB’s defiance appears to have been fired-up following a subsequent board meeting in St Lucia, which also discussed the governance report. “Did the academics look into this? Are the nation states encouraging cricket in the communities?” asked Nanthan. “I say all this so you can understand the costs of the opportunity, which you have been offered through the opportunity of the Professional Cricket League.” STATE’S ROLE The WICB vice-president added: “Early education in sports in schools is the responsibility of the State. The responsibility of training to achieve successful performance and results for national teams in regional and international sports is the responsibility of the governments.” Nanthan says the WICB is prepared to make amendments, but stressed that only share-holder territories can legally dissolve the WICB. “We are prepared to make some changes as we did following previous Governance Reports,” he told Kaieteur News in Guyana. “However, on the basis of a corporate review and legal advice, only the shareholders of the WICB can dissolve the company – the WICB. And similarly only shareholders can appoint new directors to the board, whether they are independent or shareholders directors.”
Jamaica Skeet Club president Khaleel Azan wants to make clay shooting a less-expensive sport for youngsters, noting plans are under way to make it more inclusive to allow more high schools to compete at the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) level over the next two years.Azan is mindful that the sport might not be open and affordable to all young Jamaicans at the moment, but is hoping to help offset those challenges by attracting more sponsorship.”The goal is to get this (clay shooting) under the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) umbrella in 2017 or 2018, and that is going to get the sport to a different level,” he pointed out to The Gleaner in a recent interview.LOWER COSTHe continued; “It’s going to open the sport to total Jamaica, because if we can get corporate sponsorship into this sport where we can lower the cost of shooting, then we can open it to all Jamaican Schools.”Azan lauded the Sports Development Foundation, sponsors, and other local organisations, which have helped to make the sport bigger.”I am going to tell you that with the help of certain associations, the plan is to grow itmore … if you noticed Mr (Denzil) Wilks was here from the Sports Development Foundation (SDF) and the secretary general Christopher Samuda from the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) was supposed to be here, but extended his apologies,” he said last Sunday at the Jamaica Skeet Club in Portmore, St Catherine.While praising the showing by the young talents there, the skeet club boss wants to open up the floor for even more girls and boys, who he wants to be on the same quality as overseas talents.”We are achieving a lot from year to year, my dream is where do the boys go from here and where do I view the over-seas tournaments and I think we are getting there, I see us getting closer and closer,” he outlined. “The overall picture is very positive.””The other thing that pleases me is that, we have 12 girls shooting, it’s one of those sports that bring girls into it and girls can do well,” added Azan.More than 70 shooters competed at the annual Digicel Inter-School Clay 50 Birds Championship at the most recent event last weekend.