Practice pitches biggest concern
By Roger Persaud
December 9, 2006
LOC CEO Karan Singh addressing the media at the weekly press conference of the LOC yesterday. On his left is Minister Frank Anthony and on Anthony's left is GCB president Chetram Singh. (Lawrence Fanfair photo)
The practice pitches at the Providence Stadium are the biggest concern facing the venue which will host the Super Eight matches of the International Cricket Council's (ICC) Cricket World Cup 2007 tournament.
This disclosure was made by Chetram Singh, Guyana Cricket Board president and Chairman of the cricket sub-committee of the Local Organising Committee of CWC 2007 at a press briefing yesterday.
What was the third weekly press conference was held at the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) office on Middle Street and was chaired by LOC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Karan Singh.
According to Chetram Singh, a special committee that had been formed three weeks ago, had made good progress with that issue. Four additional employees had been hired to assist in the completion of the practice pitches which would be seeded this week and work had been started on the all-weather pitch.
Terra Firma, the firm contracted to lay the stadium outfield is back in Guyana to bring the outfield to ICC standards in the race to have the facility completed and in tip top shape for the event.
The stadium ground equipment including cutters and rollers had arrived and Terra Firma is already using this equipment.
They are also training local stadium personnel in the proper use of the new and sophisticated equipment.
Apart from the stadium, two other locations will be used specifically for warm-up matches and they are Everest Cricket Club and the Georgetown Cricket Club, Bourda ground.
Everest has been supplied with new ground equipment and contracts have been awarded to improve the drainage there. The historic Bourda ground, venue of numerous test cricket battles, has been busy of late with football and athletic events but will definitely be ready.
The ICC Venue Assessment Team (VAT) will be back in Guyana on February 6 for a final fine tuning and, according to Karan Singh, all of the site preparations will be completed before their visit.
Production of a documentary on the stadium is to begin next Friday and a ten-over-a-side cricket match has been arranged to coincide with that event, Singh also disclosed.
With two phases of ticket sales completed, Guyana is currently placed ninth out of 143 countries internationally and fourth among the nine host countries in ticket sales.
The third and final phase is set to commence on January 15, while the corporate package programme has been extended to that date.
This programme gives corporations the ability to purchase larger quantities of tickets than are allowed to individuals.
Karan Singh stated that the bed and breakfast programme still needed, more participants. He said some 980 rooms were now available but stated that the LOC would like to double that figure. Interested persons should contact the LOC at telephone number 22-59845 for more information.
Earlier, in his opening statement, the LOC CEO disclosed that a report detailing the list of corrections required by the ICC based on their last visit had been leaked to a local media house.
Specific items were taken from the report and used in a different context and derogatory comments were disseminated by that media outlet, Karan Singh claimed.
He said some of the items covered in the report was the responsibility of the contractor who still has over fifty personnel active on site and they are cognizant of what is required.
The other items are currently being addressed and will not pose a problem, he assured.
The CEO reiterated that the Director of the VAT praised the overall work of the LOC, the work so far completed at the stadium and especially the fantastic performance of the local volunteer team.
Apart from the two Singhs, Minister of Culture Youth and Sport Frank Anthony and Manager of cricket operations Test umpire Clyde Duncan, were also in attendance.