Near 100,000 cricket fans to flood the Caribbean
WORLD CUP: The organisers of the World Cup in the West Indies
are expecting a near 100,000 cricket crazy fans when the tournament
starts with the first game between former champions West Indies and
Pakistan in Jamaica on March 13.
The Caribbean islands are sun-soaked and the West Indies Governments
it is estimated has spent a near 400 million dollars in hosting this
once in four years cricket extravaganza.
Guyana is the first South American country to conduct World Cup
matches and the other nations among the nine host nations are Trinidad
and Tobago, Jamaica and Barbados.
To the West Indies who produced some of the cricketing greats such as
Sir Learies Constantine, the three terrible Ws - Worrel, Weekes and
Walcot, Sir Garfield Sobers, Vivian Richards, Clive Lloyd, Gordon
Greenidge and Wesley Hall to mention a few cricket is almost a religion.
Today basketball and soccer have become a more lucrative and better
attraction to the youth. But those in the know predict that if the West
Indies were to win the World Cup, cricket would again become the number
one in sport in the Caribbean.
The Caribbean Islands are all tourist attractions with some of the
most eye catching beaches and all tourist places have been given a face
The World Cup always attracts big money and it is not going to be any
different this time round. The hosts are hoping that $ 250 million would
flood in from sponsorship, television rights, merchandising and ticket
The hosts expect another $ 250 million from souvenirs, drinks,
entertainment, accommodation, food and transport. The monies estimated
are only projects and there is the possibility that there would be a
The playing of the World Cup in the Caribbean is expected to give a
big boost to tourism and also become places to invest. To the countries
playing in the World Cup, their worry is the uncertainties of the
wickets at every venue of play.
All venues have had their wickets relaid and how they will play will
only be known after each game.
So far no one has predicted how the wickets will behave. Most say
that it will be like wickets in the sub-continent. If that is the case
then bowlers who spin the ball will be at a distinct advantage.
Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India are having some of the best spinners
and these spinners must be licking their fingers waiting to get among
the wickets and spin their teams to victory.
That the wickets will help spinners is only a guess. It is said that
the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
Only once the game starts that one could predict how a wicket will