A world cup winning under-19 captain, back-to-back titles in the Regional 4-day competition, two female payers on the winning world T20 squad, the youth teams dominating the regional tournaments are just some of the success the Guyana Cricket Board (GCB) enjoyed in 2016 and recognition of the success across the board, key stakeholders were recognised at their annual award ceremony on Thursday evening at the Umana Yana in Georgetown.
Guyana Jaguars skipper and West Indies player Leon Johnson, West Indies female player Shemaine Campbelle took home the top prizes while several other outstanding individuals and a few corporate entities were duly rewarded for their outstanding contributions on and off the field in 2016.
Johnson was named the male cricketer of the year as well as senior regional cricketer of the year while Campbelle won the female cricketer of the year accolade.
However, it was youth player BhaskarYadram who won the most awards on the night for his remarkable run this year. He claimed the most valuable player and most runs award for Guyana at the regional under 19 tournament and along with Kevin Sinclair he was awarded for the most wickets at the regional u-17 tournament for Guyana. Due to his sterling performance in 2016 he was adjudged Junior cricketer of the year.
Loushanna Toussaint is the most improved female cricketer for 2016 while Gudakesh Motie claimed that title in the male category.
Sachin Singh, Nigel Deodatt, Joshua Persaud and Keemo Paul were the other youth award recipients.
While West Indies player Devendra Bishoo received an award for outstanding performance for West Indies team in 2016.
Special service awards went to News Room journalist Avenash Ramzan for outstanding service rendered as a cricket journalist.
Shannon Crawford for dedicated service as a cricket umpire, Chatterpaul Singh for outstanding service as a curator, AottoChristiani for dedicated service as a cricket administrator especially in Essequibo, Ryan Banwarie and Javed Persaud for their elevation to the West Indies ‘B’ Panel of Umpires.
Hand in Hand Group of Insurance Companies and Sterling Products Limited were recipients of corporate awards for their longstanding contribution to the development of cricket through sponsorship while Rose Hall Town Youth and Sports Club was named club of the year.
Speaking at the ceremony Minister within the Ministry at Education Nicolette Henry applauded the GCB for producing successful players and congratulated all the cricketers for their success and urged them to carry on the same vein in 2017.
GCB President Drubahadur outlined the various domestic tournaments held which corresponded into the country’s regional success while the Secretary Anand Sanasie explained that more work will be done in the coming year to further enhance the teams’ performance. Sanasie spoke of having more coaches in the system to better the younger players.
West Indies Cricket Board Director, Conde Riley delivered the feature remarks and outlined the development plan the regional board has for the future of West Indies cricket which looks bright especially with the success of the Guyana Board.
The Barbadian who is also the Barbados Cricket Association Vice President spoke of the negative narrative which must be changed since the foundation is laid for the Caribbean side to bear success. This has started with the excellent preparation for the West Indies Under-19 team that won their maiden World Cup this year. Riley stated that the preparation stared in 2014 and with keeping with what is a winning formula, the under-19 team to defend the title in 2018 in New Zealand is already in preparation which started with a week-long camp in Grenada which was used to select the West Indies U-19 team to participate in the Regional Super 50 in January/February, 2017.