Sports in Southern Trinidad got a shot in the arm on Sunday when work re-started at the Tarouba Stadium. Whilst officials of UDeCOTT were visiting the controversial venue, clean up exercises were on the way at what was supposed to be the pride of South in terms of Sporting arenas.

The facility which started in 2002 was shelved by the People’s Partnership Government, as they spoke of poor construction and movement of the land that the Stadium was constructed on.

The facility which was to bear the name of the legendary Brian Lara, was supposed to be finished in time for the 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup in the Caribbean. There were three warm-up matches carded for the venue and at the time the six cricket pitches were constructed but the stands and players area were not ready.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley recently announced that TT$90M will be spent in an effort to refurbish the venue to have it ready for sports soon. On Sunday officials heard from media personalities on what is required to get the facility up to world standard in terms of communications. Guardian Media’s Vinode Mamchan and a host of visitors from ESPN on the invitation of Baldath Mahabir of the T&T Cricket Board (TTCB) visited the venue and held discussions with UDeCOTT officials.

According to Mahabir, if the ground is completed it will put T&T in a better position to bid for internationals matches. “When this facility is finished, it will put us in a better position to bid for international matches because the facility will be owned by the government and we would not have to fork out the amount of money that has to be paid to Queen’s Park for renting the venue. When you put it in this context it makes it easier for the country to bid for matches when the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) hosts international teams.”

Mahabir also added that cricket fans in South Trinidad has been denied top level cricket because no matches can be hosted at Guaracara Park anymore. “Due to health and safety concerns we are not able to host matches at Guaracara Park and fans from the vast southern area has suffered the consequences. Once this facility is up and running, they will be able to get top level cricket played in their backyard.

SSCL opens onThursday

The Secondary Schools’ Cricket League opening ceremony and Super Sixes tournament takes place this Thursday at the Fatima College grounds, Mucurapo Road, Port of Spain starting at 8.30 am.

The format for the day’s proceedings is a “walk pass” followed by a cheerleading competition and Super Sixes tournament. This year marks a special occasion as the Secondary Schools’ Cricket League and PowerGen celebrate this milestone in the annals of cricket history with the theme, “The Power of 20 – Celebrating 20 years of promoting youth development through sports and education.”

This year marks 20 years of Sponsorship by the Power Generation Company of Trinidad and Tobago (PowerGen). The cheerleading Competition is expected to be keenly contested between teams from the East, South and Central Zones of the SSCL. There would also be moko jumbies and a dance item by students of the Barataria South Secondary School to commemorate this special occasion.