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Sports Minister Confident About St. Lucia's Selection

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Contact: Lucius Doxerie

Thursday, September 25, 2003 - As the International Cricket Council – ICC - continues preparations to host the Cricket World Cup in the West Indies in 2007, St. Lucia has been selected as Venue Summit 1. Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Education, Human Resource Development, Youth and Sports, Hon. Mario Michel says, St. Lucia has the most modern cricket venue in the West Indies at this time and one of the best appointed ones. “One that all who has seen and utilized it has the highest of praises for it.”

“In fact, it is to be noted, that the Australians when they played here the last time, rated our venue very highly and the Australian manager was asking and wondering aloud, why is it that they have to move to any other island. Why can’t they just spend the tour here in St. Lucia at the Beausejour Cricket Ground? So that from a point of view of venue, St. Lucia is probably way ahead of our other regional competitors at the moment, in terms of being selected to host matches come 2007,” Mr. Michel said.

The Minister for Sports was at the time responding to journalists at a press briefing held at the Government Information Service on Thursday. The briefing was held to apprise the press of Saint Lucia’s selection as Venue Summit 1 from September 26-27 at the Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Resort.

The main focus of the summit will be to inform prospective hosts of the Cricket World Cup on how best to prepare for the event.

One major consideration for the Beausejour Cricket Ground (BCG) will be to install additional temporary sitting. At present, the BCG has a seating capacity of 10,000.

“Among the persons who will be coming to St. Lucia over this weekend would be experts on the augmenting of sitting capacity. During the last Cricket World Cup in South Africa for instance, some10, 000 new seats were erected a few days before a match and dismantled thereafter. That’s probably the direction in which we will go,” Michel said.

The deadline for bidding is November 2003. Responses indicating which countries are selected to host particular matches should be forthcoming in March 2004. Meantime, a Bid Committee comprising seven persons has been established under the joint Chairmanship of the Minister for Sports and the Minister for Tourism.

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