CWC 2007 crisis looming

KINGSTON, Jamaica, October 20, 2007 – The Caribbean is now on the threshold of losing the rights to host Cricket World Cup 2007 because seven of the nine host countries have not yet passed the “Sunset Legislation”.

And unless the legislation is passed in the next 11 days, the games are likely to be relocated to South Africa.

“If they play politics with this one, we could end up losing the games and all that investment that people have made,” he warned. “Simply nobody will take the chance; the ICC can’t afford the liability that they would be exposed to,” said Chris Dehring, Chief Executive Officer of the ICC Cricket World Cup West Indies.

He was speaking yesterday at the Gleaner Editors’ Forum in Jamaica, an event organised by the Gleaner Newspaper.

November 1 is the deadline set by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for the countries to have enacted the Sunset Legislation.

Only Barbados and St Kitts have made it law. Those outstanding are Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago,

Dehring also said that the absence of the Sunset Legislation has been affecting the ability of the Local Organising Committees (LOC) to implement certain preparation activities for the sporting event.

He added that a team of officials from the ICC will be visiting host countries next month to inspect the stadiums to be used for the 2007 matches. He said that if the inspection reveals under-preparedness, the tournament would be moved to South Africa.

The Sunset Legislation is applicable only for the duration of the games and will address illegal promotional activity, the rights of the host country, and travel and customs requirements for visitors moving between host countries.