Curtain falls on U19 cricket tournament
A closing ceremony for the week long event for the East Asia Pacific Region U19 Cricket tournament was held at the Tradition Resort at Ululoloa, on Wednesday night.
The tournament was the 2018 U19 Cricket World Cup qualifier, where Papua New Guinea has qualified after winning all five of their games.
Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi congratulated Papua New Guinea for winning the tournament and also Samoa for winning two of their games, which is a milestone for the U19 level. He also congratulated Vanuatu and Fiji for participating in the tournament this year.
In an interview with the IntVernational Cricket Council, Director Laura Piekarski, said it was a fantastic event that had been put on by the Samoa International Cricket Federation and their General Manager, Sala Stella Vaai.
“This was a great opportunity for four of our members -- P.N.G., Samoa, Vanuatu and Fiji -- to compete, with P.N.G. going undefeated throughout the tournament, so they will join 15 other members next year,” she told the Samoa Observer.
“We are very proud they went undefeated during our tournament.
“What was most exciting was that the Samoans won their first-ever game, in fact first two games, at U19 level, so in Samoa, the future of cricket is really bright.
“From a tournament perspective, the Samoa International Cricket Association put on a fantastic event, led by Sala Stella who is the General Manager, with the support of their board and their president, Geoff and all of their staff.
“It’s great to showcase such talent to the region and they are all fantastic.
“We are also lucky enough to have had some experienced international umpires join us from New Zealand, so it’s great to get the support that we are getting from full members as well.”
Moreover, Ms. Piekarski said Samoa has also bid for the 2019 tournament to be held here again, which is something they will look in to.
“We always love to come back to Samoa and they are willing to take it away from Tonga, so that is still to be decided,” she said.