Barbados rejects loss-making cricket

BCA President Conde Riley.
Photo by George Alleyne

In a clear sign that the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) is focussing on profitability and money owed to it, the island’s cricket authority has rejected an offer from Cricket West Indies to host the loss-making ‘A’ section of the coming Super 50 competition.

The Super 50 is the region’s annual one-day competition that begins Nov. 6 and runs for approximately three weeks ending with the final on Dec. 1. The tournament is divided into groups ‘A’ and ‘B’ involving nine teams including sides from the United States and Canada.

Contests within Group ‘B’ will be televised on US sports channel, ESPN, and guarantees revenue to the host country.

Barbados was originally offered the opportunity to host the Group ‘B’ matches and the final, but because that island’s independence day falls on Nov. 30, BCA requested time to clarify that whether government will be holding a parade and rally at the cricket venue, Kensington Oval.

But reports coming out of Barbados TODAY newspaper Thursday said that by the time BCA verified there will be no clash as the rally will be held elsewhere, CWI had already awarded hosting of Group ‘B’ matches to Trinidad and Tobago.

“They … offered us Zone A,” BCA president Conde Riley told Barbados TODAY, and added, “the BCA’s Board held an emergency meeting and based on the amount of money owed to us by Cricket West Indies, we concluded that hosting Zone ‘A’ would have no economic value for us because if you are owned over a million dollars (Bar$1 = .50 cents US) and you host Zone ‘A’ where there will be no economic impact to the country, we will be spending two million dollars to host that zone and the country will be getting nothing”.

Riley said that the Barbados leg of the lucrative England tour earlier this year saw most of the money going to CWI, which continues to owe Barbados considerable sums.

“The Board made its decision and we advised Cricket West Indies that we were not prepared to add another two million dollars to the sum already owned to us. We had hosted the Australian versus the West Indies Women in a Twenty20 series a few weeks earlier and there was a cost to hosting those matches. The money we received from CWI amounted to half of the cost we spent for hosting the series,” the Barbados cricket boss said.

This means that Super 50 matches will be split between St. Kitts and Nevis that decided to host Group ‘A’, and Group ‘B’ and final will be hosted by Trinidad and Tobago.

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