Lara electrifies Rwandan cricketers
Thu, Jul 16, 2009 12:15 AM
West Indies cricket legend Brian Lara proved that his class is permanent when he slogged Eric Dusabemungu for six during a brief three-ball innings at Kicukiro Oval on 11th June 2009. This was part of his nine-hour visit to Rwanda and time off from his eight-day ambassadorial tour of Uganda.
Despite his retirement from international cricket back in 2007, the six came with great ease for the cricket great, a vivid testament of his sheer class and left many local cricketers gazing in amazement.
Another of Rwanda's young national team stars Eric Dusingizimana could not hide his excitement. "He makes cricket look so easy," he said.
During the visit, Lara also paid a visit to the Gisozi Genocide memorial site, had a courtesy call with the Minister of Foreign affairs Rosemary Museminali before a stretched chat with the sports Minister Joseph Habineza.
Mr. Habineza was delighted by Lara's visit and lauded Rwanda Cricket Association (RCA) for attracting such a high profile sporting star.
"It is always good to have such icons because the worst they can do is help improve and develop sports in Rwanda," he said.
RCA chief Charles Haba also thanked Lara for his visit. "This is a memorable day for Rwandan cricket. Having Lara amongst us is a great token to us," he said. He went on to extend his gratitude to the Trinidad and Tobago High Commissioners in Uganda as well as the chairman of Uganda Cricket Association for their efforts in bringing the great Lara to Rwanda. Amb. Patrick Edwards (High Commissioner of Trinidad and Tobago - based in Kampala) and Mr. Andre Lavaeu (Deputy High Commissioner of Trinidad & Tobago) and his wife accompanied Lara to Rwanda.
In Lara's remarks, he lauded RCA and also pledged to use his expertise to take Rwandan cricket to a whole new level.
"There is no doubt, after what I have seen, it is easy to say that I will come back," the cricket icon added.
Brian Lara's remarks about Rwandan cricket left Rwanda Cricket Association (RCA) smiling. The West Indies legend, who flew in Thursday for a day's visit said that RCA's development structure was the way to go if the sport is to grow.
"The fact that cricket started among the youth is a good sign for Rwanda. What needs to be done now is for RCA to double their efforts," the cricket icon advised.
Sports Minister Joseph Habineza agreed less insisting that RCA needs to popularize the sport.
"Cricket is a new sport in Rwanda so RCA needs to work hard to popularize the game," he said. Habineza, who angered the local cricket fraternity in the past when he said that cricket was not a priority as far as his ministry is concerned, however gave a part on the back of RCA, "With what has already been achieved, the future looks bright."
Lara's visit was supported by friends of the Rwanda cricket fraternity that included Rwandair Express, Computer point, Kiboko Tours & Travel, Sekanyolya Systems, UTEXRWA, Magasin Faruki and MFI.