Trinidad and Tobago Cricket Board president Azim Bassarath says it has been a difficult task but he has guided his organisation through very stormy seas when it comes to finances over the past few years.
Speaking to the new inductees of the Bmobile 2019 Academy on Wednesday, Bassarath said he was eternally grateful to Bmobile for sticking with the TTCB for four years straight.
"We're very proud of the fact that we have thrown up some very big names in cricket right from our academy, with one of the biggest being Kieron Pollard, the player who will lead the West Indies in ODI and T20 cricket and will be in charge of the Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) as they look to make it a hattrick of titles this weekend at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba, San Fernando," Bassarath told the gathering.
"We have had really hard financial times under my leadership but somehow we have been able to get through it to produce some top cricketers. We have served with distinction and we will continue to do so, as we are one of the best-run cricket organisations in the Caribbean.
"These present players are the ones we are looking forward to going on to play for the national team and the West Indies one day. Ninety per cent of their time at the academy will be in three-day camps at the National Cricket Centre.
"The inductees will have the advantage of working with the best local coaches over the next eight weeks as they hone their skills.
TSTT Corporate Communications Manager Angalee Ramesar Soon said she was pleased with the work done by the TTCB over the past three years and gave her company's long term commitment to the programme.
"Sport has so many benefits. We see improvement in health, social cohesion and employment are created. Sport is a brand that brings T&T together and we are in it for the long haul."
The players inducted into the academy were Andrew Rambaran, Chadeon Raymond, Damian Joakim, Jeremiah Cruickshank, Justin Jaggessar, Kyle Roopchand, Matthew Gittens, Nic Ramlal, Rajeev Ramnath, Romario King, Shazard Mohammed, Shiva Sankar, Seon Hackett, Vanir Maharaj, Veran Batchu and Leniel Matthews.