Former Windies paceman, Kenny Benjamin, says Antigua cricket to improve through communities

By June 13, 2020
Kenny Benjamin druing his heyday as a West Indies paceman Kenny Benjamin druing his heyday as a West Indies paceman

Former West Indies paceman, Kenneth Benjamin is of the belief that Antigua’s improvement in cricket cannot be left up to schools but must be tackled at the club and community level.

The bent of school sports, says Benjamin, is toward participation and not development, while the importance of building good foundations for the replication of good performances at the club level lend itself to the latter.
“We learnt our cricket in the community and I’ve always said and will continue to say, schools cricket for the schools to compete against, it is for participation and there is never going to be any development in the schools. It is not designed for that so we have to get the communities organised,” he said.
“I have written a programme for the ministry which is an under-13 programme in the primary schools and obviously we would want the clubs to buy into it, so I think that is where we need to go. When a guy goes home from school, he goes back to his community and that is where the development has to take place,” he added.
Benjamin is supported in his claims by former Antigua spinner, John Archibald, who believes cricket will improve if there is a re-investment in those communities known for producing good cricket and cricketers.
“Let us look at some of these villages that use to play cricket — and I am talking about good enough cricket like Newfield, Willkies, Swetes, Old Road — I would re-invest in these villages in terms of getting them involved in cricket again. Before, you would have Bethesda going across to Newfield on the weekend and we need to get back there,” said Archibald during an interview on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show.
According to Benjamin, a healthy school competition in Antigua really stemmed from having good community teams that fed the schools.
“When you went to school you had good school competitions because everybody playing in their communities so when the guys from Liberta, Swetes and All Saints go to All Saints [Secondary] School, then All Saints has a strong team and I am sure it is the same with Pares,” said Benjamin.
Benjamin was speaking in his capacity as an employee of the Ministry of Sports and as president of the Liberta Sports Club.

Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

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