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Cricket should be included in CXC curriculum


Tue, Sep 30, 2014

Editor: Ever since the dissolution of the West Indies Federation in early 1962 and individual countries in the region, starting with Jamaica and Trinidad, were moving towards independence, the trend has been that governments in the region have been thinking more in terms of developing their own countries. Then came CARIFTA – the Caribbean Free Trade Area, followed shortly after by CARICOM – the Caribbean Community.{{more}} However, unfortunately, CARICOM seems not to be as effective as it should be, since some members of the 15-country grouping are not adhering to the Treaty of Chaguaramas which established the regional body. Some countries, especially Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago and Antigua and Barbuda, give nationals from other countries a difficult time to enter their countries.

West Indies cricket and the University of the West Indies (UWI) are two institutions which keep West Indians together. The UWI has campuses in Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago and has representatives and staff in all CARICOM states where continuing studies are being conducted. Cricket is the most popular sports in the Caribbean and it brought joy, fame and recognition to the West Indies, especially during the glory days when the Caribbean side won the World Cup in 1972, and 1976 and lost the final in the 1980 tournament. Before that period, players like Garfield Sobers, Everton Weekes, Frank Worrell, Clyde Walcott, Sonny Ramadhin and Alfred Valentine placed us in the limelight, not to mention the great Sir Learie Constantine, lawyer/diplomat/writer of “Beyond the Boundary Fame.” Cricket is part of the Caribbean. It is more than 86 years since the Windies started to play test cricket and I feel that the time is long overdue for the sport to be included in the CXC curriculum. The Caribbean Examination Council was established since 1972 by the participation of governments of Caricom States and the Council is free to include subjects in the curriculum, as members think appropriate. I strongly feel that the Council, which comprises the vice-chancellor of the UWI, vice-chancellor of the University of Guyana and the representatives from all the member states, should invite educationalists. former cricket administrators as well as past outstanding cricketers to discuss the matter. Sir Hilary Beckles, who is the vIce-chancellor of the UWI (Cave Hill Campus), who is an authority on cricket, should be invited to spearhead or advise on the move.

The subject should be taught at primary as well as secondary schools — history of the sport, names and information of world renowned West Indian cricketers, rules of the game,, statistics, and other suitable areas. This move might also generate more interest in the sport, since the youngsters in the region tend to be attracted to other sports such as basketball and soccer, which dominate television sports programmes.

Oscar Ramjeet