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Cricket of Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Source: Finder Sports

India promises to support cricket development in Ghana

There has been renewed effort to promote and develop cricket in Ghana and to bring the sport up to the level of other sporting activities such as soccer.

At a short ceremony to close the month-long top four cricket tournament organised by the Indian High Commission in collaboration with the Ghana Cricket Association, the High Commissioner, Mr Rajinder Bhagat promised his personal commitment and that of the Indian government to promote the sport in Ghana.

The under-17 cricket team emerged champions in the top four cricket tournament which was held at Achimota cricket ground near the Achimota Golf Course in Accra “We will continue to provide substantial sponsorship in all forms, including financial assistance to cricket players in Ghana, to develop the sport immensely,” he said.

He announced that the High Commission would from January next year commence the training of pupils in both the primary and high schools in cricket.

“I will soon be speaking to the Youth and Sports Minister about this strategy and have also mandated my staff to put together all the necessary preparations to ensure that it takes off smoothly next year,” he said.

He was impressed that Ghana was taking part in the Cricket World Cup tournament.

Mr Bhagat pointed out that the game needed more publicity to whip up the desired interest among sport- loving Ghanaians, adding that “we have decided to popularise and publicise the sport through the media and have also called on ambassadors of Commonwealth countries to be part of the effort.”

Commending the under-17 team for the feat chalked, president of the Ghana Cricket Association, Dr William Ampofo reckoned that the tournament had afforded the team good preparation against subsequent tournaments.

“The national cricket team has had a rare opportunity to practice and polish their skills prior to their division eight match in Samoa in the heart of the Pacific Ocean,” he said.

According to him, most of the players had improved and adhered to training tips from the coach.

Dr Ampofo was grateful to the Indian High Commissioner as well as Indian companies invited by the High Commissioner to provide sponsorship for honouring the invitation.

“We are happy that Airtel, IPMC, Melcom and other companies came in to support us to make the top four tournament a great success,” he said. Minister for Trade and Industry, Ms Hanna Tetteh recognised the potential that existed through the sport for the youth in Ghana and charged the teams not to relent in their efforts to improve their skills.

Briefing The Finder in an interview, the Chief Operating Officer of Airtel Ghana, Mr Mrinal Roy, said “at Airtel, we’ve been working at the grassroots level, at the community level largely with respect to sports and education and providing substantial sponsorship for schools.”

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