Jamaica Kickstarts the Cricket World Cup with an Opening Ceremony to Remember

Jamaica Kickstarts the Cricket World Cup with an Opening Ceremony to Remember

Jamaica - a rising venue for international sporting events


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Kingston, Jamaica–(HISPANIC PR WIRE)–March 15, 2007–With an estimated worldwide audience of more than 2.6 billion, the Opening Ceremony of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007, the third largest sporting event in the world, kicked off in fine Caribbean style on March 11 at the newly constructed Trelawny Multi-Purpose Stadium, east of Montego Bay on the island of Jamaica.

A capacity-sized crowd of 12,000 was in attendance to witness the three-hour-long ceremony dubbed “West Indian Energy – From Plantation to Pop” a colorful spectacle reflecting the various cultures of the Caribbean and highlighting the strong traditions, history and legacy of cricket in the region. With 16 international cricket teams, Heads of States, broadcasters, officials, sponsors and fans flying in to Jamaica’s tourist capital, Montego Bay, the Opening Ceremony of the Cricket World Cup was the biggest international sporting event ever hosted in Jamaica.

The Jamaica Military Band decked out in its scarlet uniform and with sharp precision set the stage for the pomp and pageantry of the Caribbean extravaganza featuring a number of international artistes including Ireland’s The Duffy Brothers, Jamaica’s Sean Paul, Alison Hinds from Barbados, Machel Montano of Trinidad & Tobago, Kevin Lyttle from St. Vincent & the Grenadines and South African reggae artiste Lucky Dube. The showcase also featured Caribbean dance sequences, fire-eaters and stilt-walkers playing cricket.

The ceremony was reflective of the spirit and energy of the Caribbean. Jamaica’s Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller welcomed the many visitors to the island and the Caribbean. The speeches ended with Barbadian National Hero Sir Garfield Sobers, a former West Indian all-rounder acknowledged as one of the greatest players in the history of the game, officially declaring the tournament open.

Jamaica’s Tourism Director Basil Smith had high praises for the leadership of the local organizing committee, stating that the success of the Opening Ceremony of the Cricket World Cup demonstrates the country’s ability to host world-class events. “Jamaica is pleased to have provided the platform for the region to showcase its ability to host a major sporting event. It is hoped that this could be used as a launch pad to host other international events offering an opportunity for these patrons to return as leisure travelers.”

Following the opening ceremony, Jamaica will host Group D first round matches and one semi-final on April 24 at the recently renovated Sabina Park in Kingston.

Jamaica remains an ideal location to host major international sporting events and with temperatures averaging approximately 80-86F (27-30C), the island is a desirable destination for year-round training as well.

Hailed as one of the best ever by the IAAF, the world governing body for athletics the island hosted the IX IAAF/Coca Cola World Junior Championships in Athletics in 2002, the World Netball Championships in 2003, and the XV Caribbean Island Swimming Championships in 2004.

Jamaica Kickstarts the Cricket World Cup with an Opening Ceremony to Remember