President of the Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board Azim Bassarath expressed his disappointment that TT will not host any matches in the 2018 Women’s T20 World Cup, and is questioning if the Sport Company of Trinidad and Tobago (SporTT) made a collective decision.
Yesterday was the deadline for TT to bid for matches in the 2018 Women’s T20 World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in the Caribbean next November.However, Government decided not be bid. Bassarath said local cricket fans would be sad and added the Government should have gotten advice from an independent committee because the chairman of the SporTT Dinanath Ramnarine is in a legal battle with the TTCB. Bassarath said, “I think the cricketing fraternity would be very disappointed but it is not surprising to us that they will not be bidding for any games in the Women’s T20 World Cup. The other thing is that we are really concerned that the Minister would have taken advice from the chairman of the Sports Company because the Minister is fully aware that the man (Ramnarine) has a matter in court against the cricket board. We were hoping that the Minister would have seeked some independent assessment of the entire situation before he took the advice of that person.”
Ramnarine is in an ongoing court battle with the TTCB concerning the governance structure of the local cricket board. Bassarath said he is uncertain if the matter was discussed with the Sport Company board of directors. “We want to know whether it is a Sports Company decision that was given or whether it was individual advice that he got from Mr Ramnarine.”
The downturn of the economy led to the decision by the Government not to make a bid for the World Cup. Bassarath, however, said the TTCB were willing to give the US$75,000 submission fee from the subvention that the cricket board gets from the Sports Company to bid for hosting matches in the T20 Women’s World Cup next year.
The West Indies Women are the defending T20 World Cup champions. Bassarath said the tournament next year could have been used to tell the women of TT thank you. “Just 20 months ago, the West Indies Women’s team won the T20 World Cup in India. We would have had four members of that winning World Cup team from Trinidad and Tobago plus, the manager of the team was from Trinidad and Tobago. We felt it was an ideal opportunity to try and do whatever we could do in our powers to host games to show our appreciation to the women of Trinidad and Tobago.”
Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs Darryl Smith informed the Newsday that it was a team decision to not bid for matches.
“Based on the information and the figures that he (Ramnarine) and his team at the Sport Company crushed, right now it would be very difficult especially with the US side of it,” Smith said. Smith said with the economic situation it is difficult for the country to host matches in the World Cup.
“We are having difficulty dealing with our day to day sports. For us at this point in time to look for something out of the realm, although we are trying to push the sport tourism, it would be difficult. It is sad, we know the girls are the defending champions. We would have liked to have the women play at home at the Queen’s Park Oval and at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy. At this point we not seeing the funds and we don’t want to commit to something and later on be embarrassed.”