The second edition of the Saint Lucia National Cricket Association (SLNCA) T10 Blast, in collaboration with title sponsor Dream XI – the World’s largest online fantasy platform, will be played from Friday 30th April to Friday 14th May 2021 at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground in Beausejour, Gros Islet.
Twelve teams have indicated their willingness to compete. The two-week tournament will be played behind closed door. COVID-19 protocols will be in place in the interest of protecting both players and members of the public.
The Association’s 1st Vice President, Shaun Alcindor said all aspects associated with the tournament in terms of live stream, website access and discussions with Dream XI have been finalized.
“This year will be bigger and better. The cricketers are excited. Two newcomers will be featured in Micoud and Vieux Fort South. The other participating teams are Babonneau, Central Castries, Choiseul, Gros Islet, Laborie, Mabouya Valley, Mon Repos, Soufriere, South Castries and Vieux Fort North,” Alcindor said.
Soufriere takes on Vieux Fort South from 12:30 p.m. while Laborie comes up against Micoud at 2:30 p.m.
. Former West Indies captain and two-time ICC World T20 champion (2012 – 2016) Daren Sammy will now play for Micoud. He was captain of defending champion South Castries Lions. Former West Indies hard hitting ODI/ T20 opening batsman Johnson Charles will replace Sammy as South Castries Lions captain.
Alcindor said that Dream XI more than double the sponsorship this year, meaning incentives to the players are much greater. Further, the players match stipend will be 100% increased, which is EC$100.00 per match. The coach and the manager will be getting a little bit more while lead players will be getting EC$150.00 per match.
“The teams are in training for the past three weeks. I have been posting videos on the Saint Lucia Cricket Association Instagram page, from various training sessions. The Mindoo Phillip Park, you have Central Castries, South Castries; likewise Gros Islet and Mabouya Valley, they are in training. Soufriere, despite the fact they don’t have a field, is using the basketball court at Fond St. Jacques for their training sessions,” Alcindor said.
Alcindor, when asked at what point will the SLNCA open the gates at the DSCG for members of the sporting public to come and view the matches said, “Honestly, I cannot answer that question, a lot depends on the Ministry of Health and the CMO and the current COVID -19 situation, meaning how it develops and also, we still have the restrictions of 25 persons allowed at a mass crowd event. However, cricket enthusiast can follow the live broadcast via the SLNCA Facebook page @cricketstlucia and Calabash TV, while efforts are also in place for viewing on Sports Max TV.”
“The decision of having people in the stands is not of our making but that of the CMO’s office. So, if at some point the authorities figure out things are going well, people are taking their vaccine, the numbers are declining then they will make that call to allow people to come into the DSCG to view the matches,” Alcindor said.
In the $20,000.00+ prize money at stake for the top teams, the winning team will take home the championship trophy, gold medals and EC$10,000.00.
Defending champions, South Castries Lions was schedule to play two friendly/ warm-up matches this weekend at the Phillip Marcellin Grounds (PMG), but due to the venue’s unavailability the matches had to be cancelled.
Tomorrow, South Castries Lions will play Central Castries at the Mindoo Phillip Park from 3.00 p.m, while, Central Castries takes on Babonneau at 1.00 p.m.
The South Castries team: Johnson Charles (captain), Collinus Callendar, Xavier Gabriel, Daniel Baptiste, Kemrol Charles, Noelle Leo, Aaron Joseph, Wendell Inglis, Shervon Leo, Wade Vlovis, Nickson Edmund, Avalinus Calendar and Ramario Simmons. Team Manager – Eugena Gregg, coach – Bryan Calixte.
The Central Castries team: Stephen Naitram, Gaspard Prospere, Alleyn Prospere, Jaden Elibox, Dillan John, Sanjay Hayle, Jemmi Mauricette, Tyler Sookwa, Dwight Thomas, Mc Kenny Clarke, Ephron Charles, Keygan Arnold, Rahym Joseph and Kyle Adonis. Team Manager – Tyrone Harris, coach – Keith Charlery.