Crushing the Essence of the Caribbean
This is an article written by a Trini volunteer to the ICC Cricket World Cup (click here to access.)
I think that many of West Indians, including myself, could relate to some aspect of what he has written.
Also, Barbados Free Press, the very best news blog in the region, has some posts describing latest comments on the de-Caribbeanisation of Caribbean cricket, and also on the planned filling of Barbados's Kensington Park with schoolchildren (on a school day.)
In the Trinidad Express, Ricky Singh says that we in the West Indies are paying much more for tickets than South Africans did in their 2003 Cricket World Cup:
For instance, South Africa had determined that admission prices to the games for CWC 2003 be based on its "social and economic realities''. Consequently, it was possible for South Africans, who had been guaranteed approximately 40 per cent of tickets for sale, to purchase for multiple matches at various venues from US$13 for two games; US90-US$100 for five games and US$65-US$135 for six games.
What a contrast to our experience with ticket s for a single match costing US$25 and as much as US$100, depending where you choose to sit! For the finals tickets are being sold for as much as US$300.Well, (to find a silver lining) it seems that the ICC Cricket World Cup has indeed brought us together, as our people across the region are all cussing to the same tune... that might be a first!
Lastly, here is an excerpt from an interview with the Australian Vice Captain, Gilchrist, and the understatement of the year by the head of the ICC:
"It's funny, it seems like a lot of people are interested in the World Cup. Talking to the locals, everyone is very aware of it and very excited for it to be here, but that is not translating into big numbers at the grounds, which is, I think, a bit disappointing," Gilchrist said.
"You come here, as the spectators do, to taste the Caribbean and the unique atmosphere that is Caribbean cricket. There certainly is an element of a sterile feel about it. I don't know whether that's because the administration hasn't let it flow, or people just aren't turning up. I'm not sure. Hopefully, as it gets towards the serious end of the tournament, we will see more big crowds and atmosphere."
Tickets to super-eight games range from about $24.50 to $123, and at the higher end are roughly equivalent to the average weekly wage in Antigua.
ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed conceded prices were "in retrospect, a little too rich for the local palate". He said the governing body relied on advice from local organising committees to establish them.