Brazil skipper believes Twenty20 cricket can help grow the game
Mon, Mar 28, 2011 10:25 AM
Brazil skipper Matt Featherstone
Brazil skipper Matt Featherstone believes that Twenty20 cricket is the main way the sport can be grown in South America.
Speaking ahead of next month's ICC Americas Division 2 event in Suriname, where Brazil will be one of six teams trying to qualify for the ICC World Twenty20 2012, he believes the format provides a chance to engage new audiences.
"For us down here in Brazil, Twenty20 is the only way to raise the profile. This module of the game makes it accessible to everyone. Let's be fair - trying to introduce a new game to the public that takes a day to play was always going to be hard work. This Twenty20 option makes it accessible for everyone," said Featherstone.
"In the last 10 years cricket has grown dramatically. We now have a full time CEO a National development officer and three Regional development officers promoting the great game here in three different states.
"We also have in place a women's team, plus an under 17's team and are working very hard on our U15's. So there is plenty happening here."
Although Brazil is not one of the favourites to gain promotion, Featherstone believes the event in Suriname will be a fantastic experience for the team.
"The Brazilian national team is always excited to take part in any form of the competition. We are still at the real grass-roots stage, but international competition helps with our progress," said Featherstone, who has been involved in cricket in Brazil since arriving there in 2001.
"We have played in Suriname before and it is a great place to play cricket. It is very humid, but the facilities and hospitality are excellent. We are really looking forward to our visit there and hope to be a bit more successful than our last trip there."