Organisers dispel suggests of scheduling concerns April 21, 2006

World Cup stadia 'will be ready on time'

Cricinfo staff



Chris Dehring: 'Full steam ahead' © Cricinfo
Suggestions that some of the grounds scheduled to host matches during next year's World Cup will not be ready on time have been dismissed by Chris Dehring, the tournament's managing director and chief executive officer.

Concerns have grown after contractors at Sabina Park admitted that there were serious delays in the ground's rebuild, but Dehring said that it was "full steam ahead", adding that a contingency plan had been submitted to the ICC in case there were any last-minute problems.

"Everyone is moving forward as planned," he told reporters in Grenada. "Of course we have a back-up plan in place and it is currently being reviewed by the ICC. That plan will only be implemented if absolutely necessary. At present, there is no one country that is being earmarked to 'take' matches currently assigned to another host venue.

"If a decision were to be taken to relocate matches from one host venue to another, it could only be taken by the organisers. This is not a decision that can be made by anyone outside."

Dehring explained that it was "critical to the overall success of the tournament, at this time every country is expected to meet its obligation to host matches. Each host venue is working not only on the completion of their stadia but on all the other infrastructural elements required to support the hosting of the tournament.

"We have just over 300 days to go, including weekends and public holidays, and everyone concerned is working assiduously to ensure that no time is lost.

Dehring also said that a revised plan had now been submitted for Sabina Park which would ensure it was ready on time. Warner Park in St Kitts is almost finished, and work on the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua is ahead of schedule. Guyana's Providence Stadium is also set to be ready ahead of the organisers' deadline.