WICB gets support to resurge Windies cricket

Published: Thursday, October 6, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Antigua:West Indies Cricket Board received a much-needed boost after an Antigua-based businessman announced plans to pump $US28 million into a regional Twenty20 competition.

Texan millionaire Allen Stanford outlined the tournament, which will start next year and involve 17 Caribbean nations.

The shortened format of the game has already proved popular with young fans around the world and Stanford believes it will fuel flagging interest in one of cricket's traditional hot beds.

"My vision for the Stanford Twenty20 tournament is that it will be the catalyst for a resurgence of love for the game, that it will signal the return to the glory days," he was quoted as saying on the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) website.

"I have been a part of the Caribbean community for over 20 years and I have witnessed first hand the power that the game of cricket wields over the people in this region."

Plans for the tournament, which would feature a USD 1 million top prize as well as a USD 100,000 windfall for the boards of the competing nations, were outlined at a lunch attended by West Indian greats including Garfield Sobers and Viv Richards.

Stanford's investment would also include thousands of dollars for facilities and coaching across the region.

The first tournament is scheduled for next August and September.

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