‘Potato field’

Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) president, Conde Riley says the staging of non-cricket events at Kensington Oval has had an adverse impact on the outfield, and with the venue set to host international cricket next year, better needed to be done to keep the facility grounds in tip-top shape.

Pointing to a plethora of musical and cultural events, along with football matches, which were hosted at the historic venue recently, Riley said if there was not careful management of the outfield, Barbados’ chances of hosting international matches could be hampered in the future.

“It (field) looks like a potato field at the moment because following on Crop Over, we had CARIFESTA, Vintage Reggae and the Hennessy Show,” Riley told Barbados Today.

“The BCA is not adversed to the staging of other events at Kensington Oval. The problem is  they are being held at a time when a huge amount of remedial work is taking place at the grounds.

“It could disadvantage us from hosting Test and One-Day International matches.”

He pointed out that sometimes during these shows, fungus was brought onto the grounds on the shoes of patrons, which led to the grass being dug up and replaced.

Items such as corks and chicken bones were also usually found on the outfield after these shows, which did not augur well for the outfield.

“Two football matches were played at Kensington two weekends ago. Fortunately, the rain did not fall but the next morning, one could see the damage done to the pitch and outfield,” Riley lamented.

“In front of the Media Centre, where a stage was placed during CARIFESTA, the grass has been murdered. The parts of the outfield where trucks drove during these shows are in an awful state.”

He stressed the problem was not the sharing of the ground but the manner it was being  managed, with some events clashing with cricket.

“Last season we were forced to play two matches in Dominica and Guyana that were scheduled for Barbados,” he pointed out.

“We believe playing those two matches away from home were the reason Barbados did not win the Regional Four-Day Championship because less than one day’s play was possible in those matches due to the weather.”

The Oval has a busy schedule ahead next year, with the venue set to host Zone A of the Regional Super50 in February and the English Counties pre-season tournament slated to be played in March.

Sri Lanka is also expected to tour the Caribbean with a Test scheduled for the Fontabelle venue.

“There is a Test match in June against Sri Lanka. If we don’t have Kensington Oval in pristine condition it will reflect on our ability to host international matches,” Riley explained.

“England will be touring the West Indies in 2019. The BCA would like to submit a reasonable bid to host a Test match during England visit to the region. Hosting a Test match against England can do a lot for the economy of Barbados, so therefore we need to keep the Oval in top shape.”

Kensington Oval is one of the region’s premier cricket venues, and played host to the historic 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup final and the ICC Twenty20 World Cup final three years later.

In recent years, it has hosted money-spinning Test matches against England and Australia and the final leg of a Tri-Series one-day series involving Australia and South Africa.

The last international game to be played at the venue was the second Test of the three-match series between West Indies and Pakistan in May. 

21 Responses to ‘Potato field’

  1. Claire Battershield
    Claire Battershield December 22, 2017 at 10:51 pm

    To think I am no seeing this article. I said earlier today that it appears Kensington hosts more events than it holds cricket matches. One would have thought that the gramdstanders would have built or purchased a facility for entertainment.

  2. Wendy Reece
    Wendy Reece December 23, 2017 at 1:40 am

    Well the cricket team are unable to play as they once did many moons ago. Therefore, why not use the venue for other events and make money. It’s about time that Barbados starts thinking outside the box to generate income for the island.

  3. Tony Webster December 23, 2017 at 5:29 am

    Mecca of cricket? And Government…is clearly calling the shot$.

  4. Sheron Inniss December 23, 2017 at 6:05 am

    Obviously someone has their priorities wrong. Why the heck does management keep cutting of their nose to spite their face?

    This will continue when it is only about the money. So will you please stop crying about the spilt milk. You will keep getting the same results if you continue to use Kensington for everything except cricket.

    Education is surely not common sense.

  5. Roverp December 23, 2017 at 7:04 am

    GREAT PLANNING…HA! HA! No idea of where to place and use facilities…..I was one always oppose to the KENSINGTON REDEVELOPMENT IDEA….I had KENSINGTON as a home for soccer and other artificial grass sports. I would have built a Cricket ground else where for World Cup and I would have either finished the auditorium at Sherbourne or converted the gym into and entertainment center. I would have redevelopment the Netball stadium to be a small auditorium.

  6. fedup December 23, 2017 at 7:36 am

    Ask Lashley and Dem wuh fuh do. He is dee ‘big’ muggafee fuh sports and entertainment.

    • hcalndre December 23, 2017 at 9:08 am

      fedup; is he the Lashley that was lately crowned as the king of the Carifesta? They`re so many of them in the party.

  7. milli watt December 23, 2017 at 8:32 am

    they struggled with that field before the use for events………..and in any case what do you expect with the continual failure of the team. MORE SHOWS TOP SELECTA!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. hcalndre December 23, 2017 at 9:00 am

    You can`t have it both ways. The shows are the only money making business that probably keeps the venue surviving. You don`t have an international football field, you don`t have no place to have top class entertainment, Barbados cricket, football and the WI cricket is in the dumps.

  9. Alex Alleyne December 23, 2017 at 9:13 am

    The MECCA is more used as a “Dance-House” more than a cricket venue because of the “tons of money in take in from such shows”.
    The football fans usually buy out the bars, while cricket can’t even attract 2 to 3 thousand fans per day.

  10. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner December 23, 2017 at 9:59 am

    Guess when it comes to hosting events money talk because cricket usage is not cutting it.But question why can there build a multi purpose facility for other sports and entertainment guess if it was golf/equestrian or polo things might have been different.

    • Ras Small
      Ras Small December 23, 2017 at 7:16 pm

      Cricket in WI as it is now ain’t gine nah way so all de m.millions dat WI dun “spend” on these stadiums NEEDS to be redirected in udda interest. Fah sure!

  11. Ossie Moore December 23, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    Conde Riley says : ” We believe playing those two matches away from home were the reason Barbados did not win the Regional Four-Day Championship because less than one day’s play was possible in those matches due to the weather.”

    Ossie : Stop talking thru your rear end Conde .

  12. Helicopter(8P) December 23, 2017 at 1:46 pm

    Conde ! With good top soiling, grading and seeding the outfield could be transformed ing a fourmonth period. Proper aeriationing would also benifit the conditioning. Where are the land-scapers and hortculteralist?

  13. jrsmith December 23, 2017 at 1:55 pm

    This venue needs proper management , people with sense ……….

  14. Greengiant December 23, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    Some members of the BCA including now President Riley wanted to go to heaven, but didn’t want to die. The BCA made an agreement with the previous administration on the management of the oval, not this administration, and the legendary Combermarian passed away with the promises.

    So death stung the BCA, and reassured Barbadians that the people would have use of the facility until their taxes are recovered with interest. Other sports were played at the oval when Pickwick club was in charge, and the field was restored properly for cricket. Address the real issue not the multi use of the facility. Cricket alone cannot pay the bills.

  15. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce December 23, 2017 at 7:53 pm

    If money was spent on the National Stadium some of the events could of been held there.
    Money is being spent left, right, centre, here, there and everywhere and BIM falling apart at the seams.

  16. luther thorne December 23, 2017 at 10:48 pm

    Cricket not attracting people. Only T20 does.

    Kensington should have never been knocked down

    There was no need to build anything either. Look at the New

    Zealand and dem cricket grounds. No big lotta stuff

  17. Ralph White
    Ralph White December 24, 2017 at 4:59 am

    It’s not rocket science, the Oval was not created or designed for a multifunction venue, especially the pitch! What do they expect the end result would be.

  18. Alex Alleyne December 24, 2017 at 12:05 pm

    Mr. Riley, hurry-up and dig up that dead, low, slow old dust bed pitch down there at the MECCA.
    WI need some good FAST Bowlers . Please help the Cricket real soon.

  19. archy perch December 24, 2017 at 6:06 pm

    One of the legacies of the crooked Barbados Labour Party when touting World Cup Cricket in 2007. Millions were wasted by Noel Lynch and his bunch of quacks.He encouraged hundreds of bajans to go seeking loans to build apartments et al in order to benefit from the big event at Kensington Oval, but it did not happen their way. First of all as Roverp said earlier, the old Kensington facilities should NEVER have been demolished. Lack of foresight. Now i am hearing one of the architects of faillure Noel Lynch on the radio today lamenting Barbados’ for not hosting another cricket event. Is he some sort of idiot?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *