Viv Richards to open Stanford 20/20 tournament

ST JOHN’S, Antigua, January 25, 2008 – Former West Indies cricket captain Sir Viv Richards will officially declare open the Stanford 20/20 Cricket Tournament on Saturday at the Stanford Cricket Ground in Antigua.

The Cayman Islands and St. Lucia will take to the field in the opening match following a lively entertainment segment headlined by Jamaican dancehall Beenie Man. Organizers say that an exciting, high-energy, dynamic opening ceremony gets underway prior to the 7:15 p.m. bowl off. At 6 p.m. the opening ceremony begins with the singing of the Antigua & Barbuda National Anthem by Claudette `CP` Peters, and a prayer.

Then the King of the Dancehall, Beenie Man, will take to the stage to perform the Stanford 20/20 Anthem, Let the Battle Begin, accompanied by CP and a local dance group, Innovations. Sir Allen Stanford, creator and financier of the Stanford 20/20, will give welcoming remarks followed by an introduction of the captains of the 20 teams who will be participating in the Tournament.

Antigua & Barbuda’s own national hero and Stanford 20/20 Board Member, Sir Vivian Richards, will declare the Tournament officially open and that declaration will signal the onset of a fantastic pyrotechnics show and the showing of the 2008 Stanford 20/20 theme song and video, Come Rise With Me, as performed by Machel Montano and Claudette Peters. The match will commence shortly thereafter.

To enhance the Stanford 20/20 experience, several improvements have been made to the Stanford Cricket Ground, says Kelly. These include more restroom facilities and the addition of a concession stand on the Northern end of the ground. The Stanford 20/20 begins on January 26 and the final match takes place on Sunday February 24. (