Stars come out for Ganga clinic

Trinidad & Tobago Newsday article.

Mt Pleasant, Tobago - In commemoration of Nelson Mandela Day, the Daren Ganga Foundation (DGF) hosted a cricket clinic and celebrity Twenty20 cricket match at the Mt Pleasant Sporting Grounds in Tobago, on September 1.

From 2pm, a star-studded T20 match bowled off with teams comprising a mix of past and present national and West Indies cricketers, led by Daren Ganga and Lincoln Roberts respectively. 

Former West Indies player, Larry Gomes, was one of the celebrities taking part as well as Olympic sailor Andrew Lewis. 

Also participating in the day’s proceedings were Daren Ganga, Sherwin Ganga, Navin Stewart, Rajindra Dhanraj, Lincoln Roberts, Navin Chan, Clint Yorke, Dave Mohammed, Dinanath Ramnarine, Gibran Mohammed, Richard Kelly, Kenneth Hazel, Iraq Thomas, Selvin Duncan, Marcus Daniel, Jason Persud, Richard Murray, Addrien Daniel and Alden Daniel.

The winning trophy went to Roberts’s team. 

This cricket clinic was an extension of the DGF’s annual cricket and football camp, which is an integral part of the Foundation’s calendar of events. 

Over the last five years, the DGF has conducted programmes coaching and mentoring over 500 young cricketers and footballers. 

This year was a historic one for the Foundation as the reach and scope of the camps were expanded to include female coaching at the Trinidad session and a cricket clinic for young persons in Tobago. 

The DGF decided to commemorate Nelson Mandela Day with these events, in recognition of the contribution of Mandela to human rights across the globe as well as Ganga’s life-changing experience with Mandela in 1998. 

The youngest player on the West Indies team that year, Ganga travelled to South Africa at an auspicious time in history —­ it was the first West Indies team to tour post-apartheid South Africa. 

On the occasion of his birthday which he celebrated on that tour, the former South African president phones Ganga to wish him happy birthday, encourage him, and offered words of wisdom that deeply affected him and motivated him to give back to society. 

This was the genesis of the DGF. 

Last year, the former national captain was privileged, while in South Africa as a commentator for the Champions League, to present his West Indies Test cap to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory as a token of immense gratitude to “Madiba”. 

The DGF, founded in 2007, through its various programmes, strives to create opportunities for young people in Trinidad and Tobago to pursue their dreams and maximise their potential. They have developed vehicles to enable talented young people to excel in their chosen field, in ways which they may not normally access due to where they live, their family situations and/or financial circumstances. 

The day’s proceedings were made possible through the support of the various DGF partners, the Tobago House of Assembly (THA), Tobago Cricket Association (TCA), Magdalena Grand Hotel, Toyota, SM Jaleel, and Guardian Group.

First Published In The Trinidad & Tobago Newsday.

Mon, 09/09/2013 - 07:39