February 4, 2009

Stanford Super Series

Stanford tightens the purse-strings

Andrew Miller

Despite saying that he would reveal all about his future plans in January, Texas billionaire, former cricket-lover and renowned self-publicist Allen Stanford has been very quiet of late.

Rumours have continued to circulate that he was about to completely pull out of Caribbean cricket following his decision to disband his self-styled legends and close his cricket office in Antigua. There was also talk that the global recession might have dented his financial empire.

Prospects of him continuing to bankroll West Indies cricket were further undermined this week when 200 employees of the Stanford Development Company in Antigua were laid off, leaving the island's prime minister distinctly unimpressed.

A spokesman for the company said they "had to reassess the market in Antigua especially in light of the global economic downturn". Where pouring tens of millions into the region's cricket fits in with that remains to be seen.

Surprisingly, the island's newspaper, the Antigua Sun, owned by a Stanford company, didn't think the redundancies were worth flagging on its website.

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Andrew Miller is the former UK editor of ESPNcricinfo and now editor of The Cricketer magazine

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