Fort Lauderdale, Florida – Last weekend’s two Digicel Twenty20 Internationals between West Indies and New Zealand at the Central Broward Regional Park in the United States have been described as successful by a number of people involved.
West Indies Cricket Board President Dr. Julian Hunte said the success of the two matches was an exciting prospect for the game not only in the West Indies, but around the World.
“We are delighted that the two matches in the United States were so successful,” he said.
“We are extremely grateful for the major efforts undertaken by the Friends of Broward County, the United States Cricket Association, as well as Broward County itself.
“We have been very impressed with the Central Broward Regional Park. The two teams were made to feel extremely welcomed by the people of South Florida, and we felt the two matches were a spectacular advertisement for the game.”
Dr. Hunte said he hoped the two matches would now help to spur further interest in the game in the United States.
“This was a bold expansion of the Digicel 2012 Series beyond the shores of the Caribbean, and we are excited to have brought the game back to the scores of West Indies fans in North America,” he said.
“Given the huge number of West Indians who live in the United States and neighbouring, as well as the commercial possibilities both for West Indies cricket and the game, this was long overdue.”
Members of the West Indies team also hailed the success of the matches in the United States.
“The atmosphere was good,” said talismanic opener Chris Gayle, whose batting in the two matches earned him the Digicel Man-of-the-Series award.
“It was a huge advantage for us, the way the fans came out and supported us so that helped to make us feel relaxed and at home.”
West Indies captain Darren Sammy added: “Thanks to the crowd for coming out and supporting us, it felt like we were at home.
“The way the fans came out and supported us over the weekend made us feel at home. It felt like we could be in Jamaica or St. Lucia, so we can safely say South Florida is ‘home’ for us.”
West Indies coach Ottis Gibson said he was thrilled his side responded to the crowd support and played attractively to win the two matches handsomely.
“There was a hell of a lot of people here who came to see us perform in the United States,” he said. “It was good that we could put on a good display for them and it gave us a good start to this Digicel Series against New Zealand.”