No Spectators, Says Authority
ARNOS VALE, ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – No spectators will be allowed in the Vincy Premier League. The T10 tournament bowls off tomorrow at Arnos Vale playing field and will be played behind the closed stadium.
The tournament, which will feature three matches daily, starting from 8:30AM is set to be the first competitive cricket league in the world since the COVID-19 pandemic. VPL will be broadcast globally, with an anticipated viewership of over 100 million. Locally, the six-franchise competition will be televised on Sportsmax and VC3.
The advice to not have spectators at the venue was given to the coordinator of the tournament, SVGCA, by the National COVID-19 Taskforce. It is understood that the basis of the decision was for citizens to continue the safe practice of no social gathering.
President of the SVGCA Inc., Dr. Kishore Shallow, indicated the decision was based on consultation with the technical committee. “The SVGCA would have preferred an option of a limited number of spectators, maybe 300 or 500 max in the stadium; however, the experts expressed some initial concerns and advised that we attempt to regularize the management of players before we consider having spectators,” elaborated Dr. Shallow.
Regarding the interest of fans and their disappointment of not being able to attend, President Shallow explained, “yes, I could understand the frustration, but similarly, I appreciate the preference of Taskforce that out of an abundance of caution, they do not want to encourage social gatherings. At the end of the day, our safety and wellbeing are of paramount importance.”
A comprehensive VPL COVID-19 Protocol is in place for the tournament, in which the players and all other parties involved physically at the venue must adhere. Moreover, the SVGCA has appointed two COVID-19 Protocol officers to ensure the protocols are observed.
The inaugural VPL runs from May 22 to May 31, 2020.