Primary school cricketers will now be able to take their game on the field to another level after receiving a boost of equipment donated by theDesmond Haynes Foundation.
The Foundation handed out pre-owned cricketing equipment, solicited by Haynes’ friend Neil Strong from private schools in England, to 21 primary schools at the Cricket Legends, Fontabelle, St Michael, Wednesday morning.
Students as well as games teachers received the gear that included bats, pads, helmets, gloves, balls and bags, with the teachers noting that the donation would go a long way toward improving the playing of the game at their respective institutions.
Former Barbados and West Indies opening batsman and founder of the foundation, Desmond Haynes, told Barbados TODAY that the gear was not new, but nevertheless, would serve a worthy cause.
“Neil Strong and his wife Georgia are the ones who would go around to the schools and collect all the stuff and store it for me. And then Ricky Elcock through Virgin Atlantic helped us to get it here.
“Also want to thank everyone, I mean the Customs [Department] people were very kind to me, they didn’t really hit me pretty hard,” Haynes said.
Haynes said the effort was made to ensure that as many young Barbadians as possible, got the opportunity to play the game of cricket with adequate and appropriate gear.
“I look at it from the point of view that when I was a youngster growing up we had to share pads. We had one pad in a team or two pads in a team.
“The foundation’s website is supposed to be up and running in the next couple of months and I guess that there is a possibility I might be getting more cricket equipment from a lot of other places apart from England,” he said.
Meanwhile, Haynes also reminded cricketers who aspire towards achieving a tertiary education, that there was the Desmond Haynes Scholarship which started last year with the first recipient being multitalented sportsman Keon Harding. Haynes said funding for the scholarship was raised through the Desmond Haynes Foundation Golf Tournament, which was held in February at Royal Westmoreland.
“It is important that when we raise this money to give it to the young cricketers, male or female, because it would then inspire us to go out there and work a lot harder in order to do some more fundraising. And people love when they see that they are giving and the money is going to where it is intended to,” Haynes explained.