Dubai, May 9 IBNS | 6 months ago

ICC President Alan Isaac, Chief Executive David Richardson and Global Development Manager Tim Anderson on Friday met with Papua New Guinea (PNG) Prime Minister Peter O'Neil in Port Moresby.

The meeting came during the first ever visit by an ICC President or Chief Executive to the Pacific island nation, and highlighted PNG's remarkable rise up the Associate and Affiliate ladder.

PNG is a success story of the Pepsi ICC Development Programme, with the Pacific island nation recently earning One-Day International (ODI) status and currently being ranked 16th in the world. There are also now over 150,000 participants involved in Cricket PNG's junior development programmes, the ICC said in a statement.

Isaac said of the meeting: "It was great to have the opportunity to meet Prime Minister O'Neil, who pleasingly is a cricket fan. We highlighted to him that cricket in PNG had recently taken a significant step forward, and due to this was now being treated more seriously by the ICC."

"A requirement, however, of playing ODI matches is a venue that meets ICC's ODI regulations. We therefore also stressed to the Prime Minister that this is an area Cricket PNG now requires some additional assistance," he said.

Prime Minister O'Neil said: "The PNG Government is a strong supporter of sport, and we are particularly proud of the progress cricket is making both domestically and on the international stage. The welcome visit of the ICC's top officials to PNG is evidence of this progress.

"We have received a proposal from Cricket PNG, and will now be discussing this further with the hope of being able to help cricket in PNG develop even further," O'Neil said.

The ICC officials are in Port Moresby for a biennial ICC Development Committee meeting, which will take place on May 11 and 12.

(Posted on 09-05-2014)

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