Feb 1, 2013, 10:31 AM
Cassim Suliman, CEO of Africa Cricket Association and ICC Regional Development manager for Africa, who wrapped up a three-day visit to The Gambia, has told media representatives at a press conference that the International Cricket Association is planning to establish a Cricket Oval for the Gambia Cricket Association.
"I am in The Gambia to help establish a developmental agenda for the Gambia Cricket Association through the initiative of the International Cricket Council," Suliman, who described cricket as a game of holistic life stock, patience, responsibility, and challenges, explained to the gathering during a one hour press conference held at the Inependence stadium VIP Lounge yesterday morning.
"Basically our primary objective is to see to it that cricket is given the proper structure in The Gambia because it is not only a sport but it also provides a holistic life stock, patience, responsibility and challenges, which can be injected to the children," Suliman highlighted.
The ACA CEO further spoke on the need for the Gambia Cricket Association to have a cricket oval of its own, adding: "Our issue is that the Gambia Cricket Association needs their own facilities as well as identity to make sure it is developed".
"We will help you (Cricket Association, The Gambia) to move to a positive direction, which is basically the whole idea about my visit to The Gambia."
Suliman spoke at length on the numerous plans set aside by the ICC to help the Gambian Cricket Association to catch up with other leading cricket associations across Africa.
He said the initiative is a laudable one set up by the ICC whose ultimate objective is to provide high quality facilities for its members around the globe of which The Gambia is no exception.
In his speech at the press conference, the President of the Gambia Cricket Association, Johnny Gomez, described Suliman's visit to The Gambia as very timely given the fact that it is part of Suliman's effort to ensure the Gambia Cricket association goes from strength to strength.
Gomez, who hailed Suliman for his foresight regarding the way forward of Gambia cricket, used the occasion to speak about the plans underway for the decentralisation of cricket activities across the country.
The development officer of the National Sports Council, Abdul Aziz Titao Mendy, who also spoke at the press conference, applauded Suliman for visiting The Gambia.
Titao described Suliman's initiative as "wonderful", saying the Ministry's strategic plan is one of the plans the cricket association is trying to emulate.
Titao added: "Cassim Suliman is in the country to see how best the Cricket Association of The Gambia can be able to develop to the highest level."
Titao also revealed to the media that the ministry has agreed to allocate a land for Suliman to build a cricket oval for the Gambia Cricket Association, describing the move as a complementary initiative to the effort of the Government of The Gambia.
"We told Suliman that we will give him the opportunity to go ahead with his proposal, and the National Sports Council is ever committed to the development of all sports in the country."
Titao finally appealed to all stakeholders to be supportive of the development of sports in the country in all areas and at all times.
In attendance at the press conference were journalists from different media houses, who had the unique opportunity of asking questions pertaining to the developmental plans of the national cricket association.