Cricket goes yellow

Main Stories, Sports

The National – Tuesday, June 21, 2011

TELIKOM PNG through its citifon brand yesterday announced a K50,000 sponsorship towards the staging of the first-ever ICC East Asia Pacific championships to be held in Port Moresby next month.
The championships amongst the EAP affiliates such as Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu and Japan will determine a place in the Twenty20 (T20) Cricket World Cup in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, next May.
The sponsorship by Telikom allow it to claim naming rights as the citifon ICC-EAP championships.
The event will be staged for the first time on PNG soil with the country’s national cricket team, the Barramundis, expecting a strong challenge from the four other countries in the EAP region.
Telikom PNG chief executive officer Peter Loko congratulated Cricket PNG for hosting a major regional cricket tournament saying: “It is good to see that PNG is gaining exposure in international sports such as cricket by bringing the ICC EAP championships to PNG.”
He said cricket was in good hands because of individuals of the calibre of Bill Leane and Greg Campbell who had greatly developed cricket in the country over a short period.
“As the team behind your team, we, through our recently launched citifon brand, are proud to support this event and also assist our players excel to meet international sports standards,” Loko said.
The tournament, from July 4-11, will see PNG Hebou Barramundis taking on EAP’s best teams.
The T20 games will also be televised live on EMTV allowing fans across the country to watch the championships.
This event will feature T20 cricket as well as 50-over cricket.
The winner in this event will qualify for the International Cricket Council’s T20 World Cup qualifier to in Dubai next February.
Cricket PNG CEO  Leane thanked Telikom PNG for their partnership.
“We really appreciate the support from a strong traditional backer of sports in the country,” he said.
Leane said cricket was rapidly growing at the international scene.
“PNG is proud to host international sporting events, similar to the Pacific Netball Series last weekend and now the T20 championships at Amini and Colts Ground.”
He said coach Andy Bichel and Greg Campbell were in charge of the team’s preparation and were expecting, Fiji who are fast becoming a force in the East Asia Pacific region, to push the Baramundis all the way.
During the tournament, CricketPNG has scheduled a cricket education programme for more than 300 school children.