‘He should not be too confident’ - JCA VP downplays Perry threat
First vice president of the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA), Dr Donovan Bennett, is expressing shock at the news that former national cricketer Nehemiah Perry was considering running for the post of president of the organisation.
Perry, who is a former West Indies off-spinner, told The Sunday Gleaner recently that he is considering challenging Wilford ‘Billy’ Heaven for the JCA’s top post at next year’s annual general meeting (AGM), which is constitutional due next year.
However, Perry has failed to find favour with the electorate in the past, as he was beaten in his last two attempts to secure the post of second vice president at the JCA’s AGM.
He was beaten by Fitz Harris 64-34 at the last AGM in 2019 and Bennett believes it is going to be difficult for Perry to topple the leadership of the JCA and urged him to reconsider his move.
“I am a little surprised that he (Perry) has come forward again because he has offered himself twice already and lost by significant numbers,” said Bennett. “I don’t think he should be very confident as to what the results would be.”
“Having said that though, I enjoyed a very cardinal relationship with Mr Perry, from when he was a youth selector because I think we respect each other and I wish him all the best,” added Bennett.
The veteran cricket administrator underscored that the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has severely affected the development of cricket in Jamaica. However, he noted that despite this, the JCA has put plans in place to restart the game in Jamaica once they receive the go-ahead from the Government.
“Our activities have been severely hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic and a lot of the plans that we had on the books, we have not been able to get them through because of the restrictions that this virus has placed on us all,” said Bennett.
“I think that as soon as we get the vaccine and remember that the Government has not given us any permission to play any cricket and so we are also waiting on that and so as soon as we get the go-ahead, then we will get started again,” he said.
Bennett further stated that the development of youth cricket will be at forefront of his organisation’s plans whenever cricket resumes.
“We had a retreat on the north coast just before the virus and we had drafted up some very serious plans for youth development,” he said. “It was a conference of youth cricket and what needs to be done and stuff like that. We had all the plans in place but just when we were about to start, the COVID-19 hit us.”