National effort needed to make Antigua totally ready - Lockerbie
Guyana Chronicle
February 2, 2007

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ST JOHN’S, Antigua (CMC) – Don Lockerbie, Cricket World Cup 2007’s venue development director, said this week a national effort was required so Antigua and Barbuda could complete its preparations for hosting Super Eight matches in the event later this year.

Antigua and Barbuda is building a new stadium – the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground – as well as constructing new roads and other infrastructure at the facility, located about five miles outside the capital in an area called North Sound.

“We have less than six weeks to complete everything and it will take a national effort to get it all done in time, from landscaping to cleaning to installing furniture and fittings,” Lockerbie said after a venue inspection tour earlier this week.

“However, I am confident that the Antigua LOC will get it done and that the VRCG will be a great stadium, one of the best on show during ICC CWC 2007. A great amount of work has been done since our last visit in November and the Antigua LOC appears to be going in the right direction.”

The tour party paid particular attention to the match and practice pitches, the outfield and the players’ areas which were criticised during a previous visit last November. There had also been concern about the slow growth of grass on the pitches and damage to part of the outfield by heavy-duty equipment.

“This is an incredible project and three years ago, when we stood here, who could have imagined that this stadium and grounds would turn out to be so spectacular” Lockerbie said.

Lockerbie, along with his high-powered team, met members of the Antigua LOC and Local Security Committee (LSC) to discuss the progress of the stadium.

George Goodwin Jr, managing director and chief executive of World Cup Antigua Inc., the local organising committee, said they had taken on board all the points raised during the last inspection.

“The work that has been done since their last tour in November shows that we are committed to making sure that we deliver in time for the start of ICC Cricket World Cup 2007, a first class facility, which will be one of the best stadiums in the region,” Goodwin said.

Antigua is scheduled to host second round matches between March 27 and April.