Dubai, Sep 10: Papua New Guinea will get a taste of cricket Caribbean style this week when current and former West Indian stars touch down in Port Moresby to participate in the annual Cricket PNG Don't Drink and Drive Legends Bash.
West Indies Cricket One-Day international captain, Dwayne Bravo who has signed on as a development mentor and ambassador to Cricket PNG will be joined by Kemar Roach and Ritchie Richardson for a week of activities the likes of which the nation has never seen before, an ICC media release said.
In a first for Cricket PNG the Don't Drink and Drive Legends Bash will be a beach cricket tournament held in the coast village of Hanuabada, due to the ongoing redevelopment of the Amini Park precinct.
Former Australian Test player and current Cricket PNG CEO Greg Campbell says that the impact of the trios visit will be huge.
"Papua New Guinea is a cricket-mad nation and our team has historically always looked up to West Indies cricketers," said Campbell. "In fact, the West Indies were the first international team to tour PNG back in 1975 and our cricketers look to emulate their entertaining style of play and their spirit of the game."
"The atmosphere and excitement in the air that Dwayne Bravo, Kemar Roach and Richie Richardson are coming to town, has been astonishing," he said.
In addition to participating in the beach cricket carnival the three West Indian greats will be involved in a number of other promotional and development initiatives to kick start Bravo's Ambassador Role with Cricket PNG.
The Ambassador role will see Bravo make sponsored visits across schools, academies and rural communities throughout greater Port Moresby. The objective of these visits will be to assist with junior participation programs and use cricket as a platform to motivate and inspire PNG youth.
Bravo will also act as a mentor to Papua New Guinean cricketers who are beginning to make a genuine impact on the world stage with more than a handful catching the eye of talent scouts within professional T20 franchises around the world.
Campbell says that Bravo's profile, achievements and experience will play a crucial role as PNG enter the most important six months in the ICC Associate member's history.
"We wanted to align our top players with a mentor and a powerful global superstar who could inspire them with his presence and his invaluable international experience and guidance. Dwayne Bravo has achieved incredible heights of success within both West Indies Cricket and on a global scale, and as the current Captain of the West Indies ODI squad, we felt he was the perfect candidate."
Bravo too is excited by the opportunity. He said: "Advancing the game of cricket in developing nations of the world is something I have always wanted to become involved in. A cricketer today is a role model to millions and I wanted to use this opportunity to pass my knowledge, skills and expertise onto promising new talent and use my own experiences and leadership aptitude, to motivate youth across the world."
PNG who are ranked 19th in the world will participate as a national team in the inaugural South Australian Cricket Association (SACA) T20 Premier League that begins this month.
They will then travel to Dubai in November to face off against the cream of the crop in the developing world of cricket when they take part in the ICC World T20 Qualifier where a top six finish would see them qualify for the 2014 ICC World T20 in Bangladesh.
Then in January PNG will cap off a huge few months when they fight for one of the remaining two spots in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 at the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier in New Zealand.
Activities with the West Indian players begin on Thursday in Port Moresby with the Pacific MMI Don't Drink and Drive Legends Bash taking place in Hanuabada on Friday.