The WICB/WIPA 3rd Annual Player’s Award function was held last Tuesday, June 9th in the Ball Room of The Jamaica Pegasus with Cocktails at 6pm, Dinner and Ceremony at 7pm. Which function starts on time in Jamaica?! This one started before time! Kudos to the organizers and MC Michael Hall for keeping it flowing. He did his best seeing that there were no menus or programmes given to guests.
Special guests included Lady Allen, Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Dr. Wykeham McNeil, Sirs Richie Richardson, Curtly Ambrose, Andy Roberts, Everton Weekes and Clive Lloyd. Ambassador Courtney Walsh and WI Coach, Phil Simmons were also in attendance, along with members of the Australian team here for the test this weekend versus the West Indies.
Dinner started with a nice, creamy Pumpkin soup with Jerk Chicken spinners! Interesting right? Then came a fancy, well presented raw Vegetable salad followed by a lovely main course. I can officially say The Jamaica Pegasus Hotel is no longer one of those hotels that you go to for a wedding, graduation or awards ceremony etc. and you get mediocre food including cliché stuffed Chicken Breast that may be overcooked and dry. Instead, I got a meagre serving of Lamb chops BUT a healthy serving of Snapper and Yam Run Down. Everything on the plate was flavourful and delicious with wine to complement it all. A small piece of tasty Cheesecake with Chocolate on the side, completed dinner.
Since guests were served on time and each course was in quick succession after the other, we were allowed to enjoy greetings by the Presidents of the WICB and WIPA, Dave Cameron and Wavell Hinds respectively topped off by a fabulous speech by Guest Speaker, past WI fast bowler, politician and minister of the church, Sir Wesley Hall in the mean time. His eloquence, use of vocabulary and ability to captivate the audience’s attention was sensational. He went over his time I am sure, but with his stories, humour and words of inspiration and encouragement to current cricketers, it was a pleasure to listen for more. He reminded players that talent alone doesn’t earn success, but work ethic and discipline as well. There is also no ‘I’ in team, the team wins and players contribute. Wise words by Wes. I surely hope the young and upcoming cricketers walked away from the function with a totally new, fresh, positive outlook. I surely would.
The West Indies Women’s Cricket team were congratulated for winning the ODI series, 3-1 on their Sri Lanka tour as well as the T20I series, 2-1 earlier in May this year. Good job ladies!
The event was aired live on Sportsmax and another channel. IGL, ICWI, Grace Kennedy and other sponsors were thanked for their support. It was a pity that a lot of invited or expected guests did not show, leaving many empty seats, as the event provided a pleasant reminder of the West Indies and quality players in its hay-day and highlighted current and upcoming talent. The Ashe Performing Arts Ensemble gave a vibrant, refreshing performance to close the night. As this event is young, Suga expects even better next year.
Some winners of the night were as follows:
Under 19 Team of the Year – Guyana
Under 19 Player of the Year – Shimron Hetmyer
First class Team of the Year – Barbados
1-Day Cricketer of the Year – Denesh Ramdin
Test Cricketer of the Year – Kraigg Brathwaite
T20 Cricketer of the Year – Samuel Badree
Emerging Cricketer of the Year – Jermaine Blackwood
Womens’ Cricketer of the Year – Stafanie Taylor
Men’s Cricketer of the Year – Sulieman Benn
Lifetime Achivement Award (WICB) – Chetram Singh
Lifetime Achivement Award (WIPA) – Renford Pinnock
Rally round the West Indies!
By: Gabrielle Williams