DOHA: A number of former and current international players will be seen in action as ‘guest players’ at the two Twenty20 floodlight cricket tournaments to be hosted this summer by West End Park Stadium, it was announced here yesterday.
Mana Ibrahim Al Mana, Chairman of West End Park, and Qatar Cricket Association (QCA) officials yesterday launched the two tournaments aimed at promoting talents at the local cricket clubs .
“I am excited to launch the first ever Challenge Cup and Ramadan Tournament at West End Park Stadium. Ramadan is a traditional period to promote Qatar’s sporting heritage and I’m sure both tournaments will be popular among the local cricket fraternity,” Al Mana said, while speaking during a press conference.
“The two tournaments are designed to give local cricket clubs at all levels the opportunity to compete at the finest facilities in the country. Interest is sure to be high and I would urge teams to register to avoid disappointment,” he added. “To add to the excitement, each team will be permitted to recruit four ‘guest players’ ; it is hoped that a few international cricket stars might showcase their talents this Ramadan,” he said.
The tournament will be the first of many highlights to be focused around West End Park Stadium, the venue has ambitious plans to eventually become a hub of cricket in the Middle East.
“It is my vision to create a cricket community at West End Park and the Challenge Cup and Ramadan Tournament are the first steps to achieve this,” Al Mana said.
“It is also my goal to develop the stadium in to a member’s club with full facilities. In addition, plans to develop the stadium to ICC certification, an academy and new practice facilities are currently in the pipeline. I believe cricket will have a wonderful future in Qatar,” he added.
The West End Park Challenge Cup will take place this month, dates which will be announced in the next few days, followed by the inaugural Ramadan Tournament starting from July 1 – both of which will be played under floodlights.
The Challenge Cup will be open to 16 member clubs of the Qatar Cricket Association ‘B & C’ Division. The two finalists will qualify for the Ramadan Tournament, a higher standard of competition.
The Ramadan Tournament will be limited to ten teams, this will include eight leading Qatar Cricket Association ‘A’ Division clubs as well as the two Challenge Cup finalists. This will ensure the highest level of competition, organisers said.
To register each team will pay QR 5,000.
Teams will be entered in to a league system and then qualify for the knockout stages. An array of individual and team prizes will be up for grabs throughout.
Other officials preset for the press conference were Michael Scallon, Director - Euphoria Sports, event organisers, and Gul Mohammad Khan, Tournament Director. Interested teams are requested to contact the West End Park team on +974 4476 9888 to participate.THE PENINSULA