Kensington Oval is known as the mecca of cricket in Barbados, but it has had many eventful moments of grandeur, excitement and shock. Take a look at these five memorable moments at the Oval.
1. World Cup Cricket comes to Barbados
Kensington Oval was given the honour of hosting the grand finale for the 2007 ICC Cricket World Cup, where Australia defeated Sri Lanka. A number of matches were also played at the Oval during the 2010 Twenty20 World Cup.
2. CPL Inauguration
The inaugural Caribbean Premier League cricket T20 tournament, kicked off in Barbados in 2013.
The Digicel-sponsored sporting tournament, saw Barbados presenting a blend of Caribbean music, dance and culture to the world during the opening ceremony and also hosted three matches, in which the local Barbados Trident team was triumphant.
3. Bottle Cricket
A match between the West Indies and Australia was thrown into disarray in 1999, after spectators threw bottles on the field. This was in protest of the run out of West Indian Sherwin Campbell, who many thought was purposely obstructed by bowler Michael Bevan. The situation made international headlines, as one of the bottles nearly struck the captain of the Australian team, Steve Waugh, when players were making their way off the field.
4. Rihanna Goes Loud in Bim
Bajans were given the honour of seeing their international superstar in action at home, when her Loud Tour came to Barbados in 2011. More than 25 000 fans were present as she performed hit after hit to receptive audience members. Were you one of them?
5. Sir Garfield Sobers comes home
Just like Kensington Oval, Sir Garfield Sobers’ name is synonymous with cricket in Barbados. This all-rounder has been touted as “the greatest cricketer the world has ever seen,” by calypsonians, great cricketers and cricket commentators alike. It was only fitting therefore, that the 12-ft tall statue designed by Karl and Virgil Broodhagen was relocated to ‘The Mecca’ in 2006. It previously stood at the Garfield Sobers Roundabout in Wildey.
Sir Garfield is the only living National Hero of Barbados and is now committed to the development of youth in cricket, as seen in his relationship with Digicel. Sir Garry, as he is affectionately known, is involved in a range of tournaments and training programmes, such as the Digicel Sir Garfield Sobers International Schools Cricket Tournament; a programme designed to help develop the future stars of West Indies cricket. The cricket legend has continued to partner with Digicel over the years to develop the sport. His most recent collaboration with them is the Sir Garfield Sobers School Cricket Tournament, which was launched in July of this year.