National cricket player, 22-year-old Rasheed Eddy, currently training at the Titans Cricket Academy in Centurion, Gauteng Province in South Africa, thanked the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris, and Deputy Prime Minister the Hon. Shawn Richards for making his dream become a reality.
“Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis takes pride in investing in our country’s youth, and when Rasheed Eddy approached the bank for assistance, we seized the opportunity as he has the potential to play on the West Indies team, which is his goal,” said Development Bank’s Marketing Officer Ms Vernitha Evelyn. “St. Kitts and Nevis has produced a number of cricket players who have donned the West Indies colours, but all of them are from the island of Nevis. Going by his track record as a national player at a young age, with the quality training he will receive from this Sport School of Excellence, sky is the limit for him. We at the Development Bank wish Rasheed Eddy well, and appeal to parents to support their children who have sporting abilities.”
Eddy, who hails from the Alley in Sandy Point, started playing cricket from the age of seven representing the Sandy Point Primary School. In Grade Six he received the Best Cricketer Award for the school. Although he briefly dropped out of cricket while at the Charles E. Mills Secondary School, when he resumed, he quickly hit top form.
“I played cricket along with one of our national stars, Leeward Island player, Akeem Saunders,” noted Rasheed. “I grew up playing as an opening batsman along with him and I could recall one of the best innings I had with him was vs. the Basseterre High School where I came up on top on 74 runs not out giving me the Man of the Match.”
He got a break in 2017 ,when he was part of the St. Kitts-Nevis Patriots camp for their home leg matches, and while there his exploits on the field caught the eye of Coach Phil Simmonds, who saw that the young player had something to offer. One of his friends, Jeremiah Louis, who plays for the Patriots, connected him with the coach.
“The experience I was able to get from being a part of such amazing group of players, players like Carlos Braithwaite, Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, and others, was invaluable,” said Rasheed. “Being a part of the camp, I was able to learn a lot and gather a lot of knowledge. That also helped me to grow myself physically, and mentally because that is what it is all about — it is not always going to the field.”
He is part of the St. Kitts national cricket team, and during last year’s CPL games the young Kittitian cricketer spoke to Coach Donovan Miller, telling him that he wanted to get to the next level in cricket. The coach promised to look around and see if he could get something for him.
“It was in October last year and he sent me a message and he said ‘I think I might have something for you in South Africa’, and he put me on to Coach Chris Cardoso of the Titans Cricket Academy, which is a Sport School of Excellence, and I was promised that I would be joining this month, February,” Rasheed said.
Eddy left the Federation Feb. 13 for training in Centurion, Gauteng Province, sandwiched between South Africa’s administrative capital Pretoria in the north, and commercial capital Johannesburg in the south. He reports that he doing very well and bonding well with his coach and other players.
Getting to the academy proved cost prohibitive, but with the assistance of his friend Mr. Delonte Lewis of Sandy Point, he contacted the Minister of Sports, who is also his Area Parliamentary Representative, Deputy Prime Minister the Hon. Shawn Richards. He was also put through to the Prime Minister, the Dr the Hon Timothy Harris, all who made tangible contributions.
He also reached out to the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, where he contacted the Marketing Officer, Ms Vernitha Evelyn, who assisted in making the necessary applications. Once his application was approved by the bank, Rasheed said that Ms Evelyn told him to thank her and the bank by succeeding.
“My aim is to get to the next level of cricket, with a long-term goal of playing for West Indies,” said Rasheed. “I have been building my mind — the emotional part of me — generally and also into the sport. I just want to say a big thank you to the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis for coming true for me. It is actually a dream turning into a reality. It is my job now to go out and do my best, not just for me but also for the bank and the community and the nation.”
He also thanked the Prime Minister and deputy prime minister for investing their faith in him, and promised not to let them down.
The training course will take a period of about five months, and according to Rasheed, the academy will break for a month’s vacation at the end of April. He expects that he will be coming back home for the one month and return to South Africa after the vacation to complete the rest of the training.