Cricketing mecca! PM Mottley praises Barbados' achievements after country awarded T20 World Cup final

By Sports Desk January 06, 2024
Prime Minister Mia Mottley Prime Minister Mia Mottley

Barbados’ Prime Minister Mia Mottley says Kensington Oval being awarded the final of this year’s International Cricket Council (ICC) Men's Twenty20 World Cup, is testament to the country's high level of organisation, as she beamed with pride about the accomplishment.

Mottley, in a statement on Friday boasted about the country's cricketing feats and the fact that Barbados has firmly established itself as a cricketing mecca, while the storied Kensington Oval had cemented its place among the world’s leading sporting venues.

The ICC on Friday announced that Barbados could host the final of the June 1-29 showpiece, which is co-hosted by West Indies and United States of America. Barbados will also host three Super Eight, second round games and five group stage matches.

“It is with a sense of pride and excitement that I join cricketing fans here and across the region, in celebrating Barbados being selected to host the International Cricket Council 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup Final. That Barbados will host this final, as well as eight other games throughout the tournament, three of which are Super 8 (quarter-finals) games, is nothing short of a privilege and an honour," Mottley said.

“It is a historic moment for our country as well, as this will be the third global cricketing final Kensington Oval has hosted, confirming its place among the world’s premiere sporting venues. As a Government, we believe this is a testament to the high level of organisation Barbados has displayed throughout the years, having hosted the 2007 Men’s Cricket World Cup Final and the 2010 Men’s T20 World Cup Final," she added.

Barbados will be one six Caribbean host venues for the ninth edition of the T20 World Cup, with Antigua and Barbuda, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines all hosting matches.

Barbados will host its first group stage game on June 2, a clash between Namibia and Oman, and will also welcome two games involving reigning champions England, when they oppose Scotland on June 4, and Australia on June 8.

“It is equally a reflection of the fact that cricket is intrinsically linked to the identity of Barbados. Quite simply, it is in our DNA. Throughout our history, our nation has firmly established itself as a cricketing mecca, producing some of the greatest male and female players to have played the game, including the greatest cricketer the world has ever seen, our National Hero The Right Excellent Sir Garfield Sobers," Mottley noted.

She pointed out that the Oval, located on the outskirts of the city, will now undergo a multi-million renovation in time for the T20 World Cup and, as such, a collaboration with all stakeholders would be crucial in order to make the venture a successful one.

“The planned renovation of Kensington Oval is tangible evidence that Barbados has already started its preparations. Over the coming months, we will continue to work with all stakeholders, in and outside of the sporting arena, to ensure the thousands of fans who gather here from across the world experience a safe, enjoyable and successful tournament and final," Mottley said.

“On behalf of the Government and all Barbadians, I wish to express sincere thanks to the ICC and Cricket West Indies for selecting Barbados and Kensington Oval as the location of choice to host this ICC 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup Final. As Barbadians, I say let us all work together to make sure this tournament is a resounding success. And in so doing, let us reflect the pride and industry we possess as a people, and share it with the world," the Prime Minister ended.

Guyana will host the first semi-final on June 26, while Trinidad and Tobago will take centrestage for the second semi-final a day later.

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