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Is this the legagcy?

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Everyone was bloated with excitement; the necessary sacrifices were made by sportsmen and women; the government added the needed finance to see the Arnos Vale Playing Field get a facelift; it was reconfigured and met minimum international standards.{{more}}

Promises were aplenty, as the refurbishment was a must not only to fulfill our hosting of warm up matches ahead of the 2007 Cricket World Cup, but to compete with the other nations in the region.

More so, we were promised the much touted “legacy” for the estimated $60 Million spent on the three facilities: Arnos Vale, Sion Hill and Stubbs.

The harsh reality has struck us that our picturesque ground, our pride and joy, Arnos Vale, which consumed the biggest chunk of the investments, had been reduced to more or less second class status.

It must be a slap in our faces that next year, with three international teams descending on the region, and with a total of nineteen matches, St. Vincent and the Grenadines is not slated to host any.

Is it a case of poor representation, or are we being marginalized or sanctioned for the bottle throwing incident which occurred earlier this year during the Australian tour?

The latter, I should doubt, since in 1999 in Barbados a similar and even worse missile barrage took place, and they have gone unpunished.

There was a crowd invasion in Guyana also in 1999, involving the same Australia team, which resulted in an ODI being declared a tie. The Guyanese, too, have gone unscathed.

We accept that we do not have the hotel accommodation to host the England team and its large contingent of supporters.

So what about the Indians or the Bangladeshis?

Once lauded for its efficiency of staging One Day International matches, and good returns from the gates over the past 15 years by the West Indies Cricket Board, St. Vincent and the Grenadines has to do with the leavings and the “bun-bun” from the pot.

We are forced to dine on two flimsy practice matches by the lowly rated Bangladesh, two regional four day matches, and the visits of ICC associate member and our goodly friend Cuba, who are still in the Cricket womb, having just been conceived.

But let us forget for a while the fact that the main facility possesses some poorly constructed areas; an unattractive Media Centre, and the “finishes” were not finished; neither is it spectator friendly. So what then is the real cause of us being sidelined?

As expected, we are all going to react in disgust, but the writing was on the wall for us, with countries like Dominica and St. Kitts and Nevis entering the fray.

But it must not be a case of “wha gorn bad ah morning, carn geh better ah evening”.

It may be imperative for us to take this concern to another level, that is, the high authorities in government, since they were the ones who invested our limited financial resources on the project.

Maybe, the issue should be taken to the Caricom level, and be made a policy that small states like ours are assured a bite of the pie.

It is also the government, which each year has been granting public holidays, to ensure that there is maximum crowd support, which in turn puts money into the coffers of the WICB.

Whilst we have over the years been a certainty for a match, it is ethical for the WICB, to give us an explanation for our non inclusion this time around, so if warranted, the corrective measures are put in place.

Let us hope that at this eleventh hour that some of the proposed fixtures are not cast in concrete, and at least one match comes our way.

But whatever the outcome, it must be a wake up call as this column since the end of the warm up matches last year has been calling for a serious approach to the marketing of the Arnos Vale Playing Field, so we must not be at the pleasure of the WICB, but become the architects of our survival.

But what is a certain unwanted legacy is that “Mound” at the Sion Hill Playing Field.

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