PRESIDENT of the Central Sports Cricket Club Richard Ramkissoon is quietly optimistic that the lifting of current Covid-19 restrictions will take place soon and allow for the start of local cricket.
The game was halted last March when the pandemic started taking its toll locally and regionally, which forced the curtailment of the 2020 cricket season.
At the time, Central Sports, based in Felicity, Chaguanas, were poised to make a serious challenge to claim the National League Premier 1 league title, which represents club supremacy.
According to a Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board release, the administrator is hoping that a relaxation of the Covid-19 Regulations by the Ministry of Health will allow a shortened season which is planned by the Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board which wants stage a two-round 50-overs competition and a T20 tournament for the top clubs.
Ramkissoon, who is also a member of the National League Committee headed by chairman Parasram Singh, is confident that adequate protocols can be put in place to allow for the safe conduct of the shortened season.
“We have been in discussion and we have spoken about putting protocols we want to have in place and those will also be put into the regulations. One is that all venues must have running water and must provide hand sanitizer. We also want to regulate who comes into the pavilion, so we want to restrict it to players and match officials only,” he explained.
“All of these things are not cast in stone. We are still discussing it and we have not engaged the clubs as yet, so all these things can still be modified accordingly,” Ramkissoon also told the Express.
“We are still waiting on government approval for local sports to resume and for clubs to resume training. As the Prime Minister said, only national teams are being allowed to train and prepare so we have not started anything as yet but we will be ready once we get the go-ahead,” he added.
As for his club Central Sports, Ramkissoon said they have not started any pre-season training as a team but is confident they will be ready if and when they get the green light from the government to play ball.
He said Central Sports cricketers have been placed on alert to start preparations with high hopes that they will pick up where they left off last year when they were making a strong run for the club crown.
First-hand look at the facility
Recently, Ramkissoon paid a visit to the club’s Invaders Ground on Maha Sabha Street in an effort to get a first-hand look at the facility to identify what needs to be done to get the playing field ready and spruce up the pavilion and dressing rooms.
He was accompanied by Member of Parliament for Chaguanas West, Dinesh Rambally and Councillor for Felicity/Endeavour Wendy Francis who have both offered their help to provide a safe and proper venue for the cricketers.
Invaders ground is also equipped with a jogging track and floodlights and is also used to stage religious and cultural events involving the village and the national community.