St Mary Big Bash cricket launched

Daily Observer (Jamaica) - - SPORT -

The 2019 stag­ing of the St mary cricket as­so­ci­a­tion/ mau­rice clarke Big Bash T20 tour­na­ment, which bowls off next Sun­day, will have San­dals Re­sorts in­ter­na­tional on board as the ti­tle spon­sors.

This was an­nounced last Thurs­day at the press launch for the event at Beaches Ocho Rios by gen­eral man­ager of the re­sort, Brian Roper.

The com­pe­ti­tion, named af­ter par­ish stal­wart Mau­rice Clarke, has at­tracted a very strong 12-team field and will have as as­so­ci­ate spon­sors Costly Con­struc­tion, Park­way Phar­macy, Bra­ham ser­vice sta­tions, White Hall Es­tates, and Wisynco.

In ad­dress­ing the gath­er­ing, Roper gave no­tice of San­dals’ long-term com­mit­ment to cricket and sports in the par­ish, but urged the as­so­ci­a­tion to ex­er­cise good gov­er­nance and the teams to show dis­ci­pline and punc­tu­al­ity.

The gen­eral man­ager pointed to San­dals’ spon­sor­ship of all lev­els of cricket in the West Indies and their un­wa­ver­ing pledge to na­tion-build­ing.

Pres­i­dent of the St Mary Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion Ian Spencer lauded all the spon­sors who had come for­ward to make the new com­pe­ti­tion a re­al­ity, and promised that his team would try to make it a spe­cial event for the spec­ta­tors and lovers of cricket in the par­ish.

The teams tak­ing part are Bosco­bel, Mango Val­ley, Days Moun­tain, Port Maria, Top Pen, Jacks River, Three Hills, Gayle, High­gate, Bon­nie Gate, Ox­ford and Geddes Town. They will be di­vided into three zones, with the top two from each zone au­to­mat­i­cally ad­vanc­ing along with the two best third-placed teams.

Spencer noted that this year’s event will fea­ture elec­tronic scor­ing, which will be up­loaded so that fans can check score­boards and sta­tis­tics dur­ing the course of the com­pe­ti­tion. “We want to de­velop our cricket in this par­ish to the high­est level, and this will be a first for a par­ish as­so­ci­a­tion in the coun­try,” Spencer added. “We also have our In­sta­gram and Face­book pages where the pub­lic will get live up­dates through­out the course of matches.”

A spe­cial fea­ture of the tour­na­ment will be a Player of the Round award to the top player at the end of each week’s com­pe­ti­tion. Matches will be played on Sun­days at Bosco­bel Oval, Days Moun­tain, and Three Hills Grounds.

Pres­i­dent of the Ja­maica Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion Billy Heaven, who was guest speaker at the launch, lauded the St Mary Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion for its ap­proach to the ad­min­is­tra­tion of cricket in the par­ish as well as its em­pha­sis on youth.

Heaven out­lined a three-year de­vel­op­ment plan for cricket in Ja­maica as well as pointed to a num­ber of suc­cesses by his ad­min­is­tra­tion over the past

(From left) Pres­i­dent of the St Mary Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion, Ian Spencer shares a light mo­ment with Court­ney Fran­cis, CEO Ja­maica Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion, Port Maria Mayor Richard Creary; and Ja­maica Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion; Pres­i­dent Billy Heaven dur­ing the hand­ing over of a cheque from San­dals Re­sorts In­ter­na­tional, ti­tle spon­sors of the St Mary Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion/mau­rice Clarke T20 Big Bash tour­na­ment, at Beaches, Ocho Rios, last Thurs­day.

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