BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, September 2, 2019 (PLP PR Media Inc.) — It was a night to behold at the Edgar Gilbert Sporting Complex’s basketball hard court in Molineux on Saturday August 31 evening when five of the nine teams taking part in the 17th edition of the Harris Basketball League (HBL) turned out for the opening ceremony.
The league is sponsored by Prime Minister and Area Parliamentary Representative for Constituency Number Seven, Dr the Hon Timothy Harris, but on the opening night he was overseas dealing with the business of the Nation and in his absence, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Sports the Hon Shawn Richards declared the league open.
The league was started in 2003 as Constituency Seven Inner City Basketball League, and according to Deputy Prime Minister Richards it shows that Dr Harris is a Constituency Representative “who is committed to sports, who is committed to young people, and who is committed to the development of people from this constituency.”
According to the Minister of Sports, who is also the Area Parliamentary Representative for Constituency Number Five, leagues like the Harris Basketball League are important as they provide young persons with the opportunity to develop their skills in the area of basketball.
“Leagues such as this league bring young persons together not only to play sports but to engage in what we consider to be something positive,” said the Hon Richards. “Leagues such as this league allow you to develop your skills and to advance even further relative to the sport of basketball.”
Nine teams are taking part in this year’s Harris Basketball League, including for the first time a team from Sister-Island Nevis. The teams are Inner City Young Ballers, Ballahollics, and Jamballers from Molineux; Runnerz from St. Peter’s, Eagles from Nevis, Rebels from Keys, Street Ballers from Ottley’s, Falcons from Sandy Point, and Tuff Ballerz from St. Paul’s.
Present at the opening ceremony, which was chaired by Eldon Thomas, were President of the St. Kitts-Nevis Amateur Basketball Association, Glenville Jeffers; immediate past president of the association Kenroy Tobias Romell; a former president of the association James ‘Barman’ Hanley; CEO of the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, Lenworth Harris; and the Harris Basketball League Commissioner Jarvid ‘Bugga’ Percival.
A mini knockout was held with the five teams that were present at the opening ceremony taking part, and emerging the winners were Runnerz from St. Peter’s. In the first game, Runnerz beat Inner City Young Ballers 30-22, in the second game Eagles from Nevis beat Street Ballers 32-30, and in the third game Runnerz beat Rebels 34-28.
The final game saw Runnerz of St. Peters face Eagles of Nevis, and with the two teams being rather tired the score-line was not as impressive with Runnerz beating the Nevis team 27-16. The winning team was presented with a $500 cash award by League Commissioner Jarvid ‘Bugga’ Percival.
In the meantime primary and high school children present at the opening ceremony were given the opportunity to make a shot, and those who excelled were each awarded $50 gift vouchers for primary school students and $75 for high school students. According to League Commissioner Jarvid ‘Bugga’ Percival, that was part of back-to-school contribution by the Harris Basketball League, and the vouchers would be redeemed at Harper’s Office Depot.
Competitive games in the Harris Basketball League will start on Tuesday September 3 with two games, Eagles (Nevis) vs. Inner City Young Ballers; and Rebels vs. Ballahollics. The league will continue on Thursday September 5 also with two games, Street Ballers vs. Jamballers; and Sandy Point Falcons vs. Tuff Ballerz; and on Saturday September 7 also with two games, Runnerz vs. Eagles Nevis; and Ballahollics vs. Jamballers.