Sponsors pull out of local youth cricket tourneys

Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board president and vice president of Cricket West Indies Azim Bassarath.  - File photo
Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board president and vice president of Cricket West Indies Azim Bassarath. - File photo

THE Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board (TTCB) has lost sponsorship of all its youth tournaments.

Board president Azim Bassarath said on April 17 that the backlash from an ongoing administrative dispute with former TTCB treasurer Kiswah Chaitoo and a police investigation into another ex-employee had hampered investors.

Asked if these recent issues had any impact on the board’s relationship with sponsors, Bassarath said they’ve been “severely affected.”

“We have lost all our sponsors for our youth tournaments. Only to say that on that matter. There’s the matter with not only the treasurer, but also the former employee who would have committed an act which is also before the police. But it has severely affected the board’s finances,” he said at the National Cricket Centre in Balmain, Couva, on April 17.

The loss of sponsorship stems from Chaitoo’s December 2023 revelation to the board on his findings of the misuse of approximately $500,000 over a five-year period. A TTCB employee has since resigned.

Chaitoo also reported the matter to police.

On February 28, he was removed as treasurer after a vote of no confidence against him. The TTCB defended the vote, saying it stemmed from Chaitoo’s role in “leaking TTCB internal affairs into the public domain, without necessary approval.”

Chaitoo has since appealed his removal and the appeal will be heard by the Supreme Appellate Committee on April 29 or 30.

Past sponsors of TTCB youth tournaments are Price Club Supermarket, Tiger Tanks and Scotiabank, among others.

Bassarath could not predict when the TTCB would be able to recover properly from the repercussions of this situation.

“Only time will tell,” he said.

As Cricket West Indies (CWI) vice-president, Bassarath welcomed the Caribbean Premier League T20 tournament and Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) for partnering with them to host this year’s domestic T20 Festival.

The tournament bowls off on April 26-May 4 and will feature eight premiership teams go all out for the $80,000 prize. Runners-up receive $50,000.

Bassarath welcomed TKR’s support and remains optimistic the contributions will go a long way in providing a proper platform for senior cricketers to compete at the highest level, and be seen on the international stage. Matches will be shown live on Flow.

“They are two (CPLT20 and TKR) major stakeholders in cricket coming on board and showing the confidence in the TTCB. It is supposed to help,” he added.


"Sponsors pull out of local youth cricket tourneys"

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