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Argentina signs MOU to get help with cricket


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The dream of Argentina’s ambassador to Barbados Gustavo Pandiani to discover the next Lionel Messi in Barbados while creating the next Sir Garry Sobers in Argentina made a giant leap towards becoming a reality yesterday.

President of the Barbados Cricket Association, Conde Riley, and his counterpart from the South American republic, Hernan Pereyra, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at Kensington Oval to underpin the development of a longterm partnership in cricket.

A similar football MOU was signed last week between the two countries.

“We are at the mecca of cricket and when you arrive at a mecca you should be humble. We are humble in seeking Barbados’ help to develop our cricket as we recognise sport as a tool which can bring our people together,” said Pandiani.

Riley indicated that there were over 30 level three cricket coaches and with such a plethora of coaches Barbados was ideally poised to supply coaches to service Argentina in their bid to become more than just an ICC associate member.

Meanwhile, Pereyra said that their cricket season ran from November to February and although their country was heavily involved in football and hockey with such a large population, there were still over four million inhabitants available for training in cricket.

He added that they would be seeking assistance from Barbados during the latter’s off season so as not to disrupt any local programmes.

Roland Butcher who was the first black man to play Test cricket for England has been one of the persons in the forefront.

He indicated that the British legacy in Argentina had left a strong connection with cricket and the athleticism of Argentinians made them very amenable to coaching in cricket.

The MOU will see the staging of joint seminars and coaching courses; access to sporting facilities for team/individual testing and rehabilitation; hosting of matches and preparation camps; and the awarding of cricket scholarships.

Both Riley and Pereyra also indicated a bid to promote an annual participation of Argentine players in the BCA domestic tournaments as part of the training and building of South American elite players.

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