Government and Digicel officials pose with members of the West Indies Women’s and Men’s teams.
Students of the St. Paul’s Primary School performing a just-penned tribute with the accompaniment of the Mighty Gabby.

Big welcome for world champions


After wowing the world this past weekend to come away winners in the Women’s ICC World T20 competition in India, the queens of cricket are back home. 
Landing just before 3 p.m. on a Virgin Atlantic flight yesterday, the entire West Indies Women’s team, along with a few members of the Men’s team, were met with a welcome fit for royalty at the Grantley Adams International Airport.
After a special greeting on the tarmac, which included musical fanfare by the Royal Barbados Police Force Band and students of the St. Paul’s Primary School, the players were treated to a reception where high-ranking officials expressed congratulations and gratitude to the teams. 
Speaking during his address, President of the Barbados Cricket Association and Director of the West Indies Cricket Board, Joel Garner, conveyed his thoughts on the achievements. 
“We are eternally grateful for the joy and the happiness that you have brought to us and, like everything else, there has been a lot of sacrifice and hard work put into your success. 
“I don’t think that people understood the kind of hard work that you all put in to get to where you were and then the hard work that you had to put in to get to the end,” he said, before adding that he hoped the girls would go on to build on the legacy of his era and surpass.
Minister of Culture, Sport and Youth, Stephen Lashley took the opportunity to inform the teams that the entire region was there in spirit throughout the competitions.
“I want to say that I believe that I speak on behalf of the entire Caribbean family when I say that we salute you. We certainly were there at the crease, on the pitch, on the boundaries – everywhere, as you so carefully crafted that victory. And this evening as we celebrate with you and reminisce about you achievements, I want to say, as Minister of Sports in Barbados, that we pay keen attention to sports. We have elevated sports to be an industry in its own right and we are drafting a new sports policy,” Lashley said.
Women’s captain Stafanie Taylor was caught short for words during her speech, stating that she was overwhelmed by the welcome and the outpouring of love showed by the supporters. She was however able to say that it was a long journey and that she was very proud of the girls. Going on to thank the management staff of the team, she said that she knows that the players will do well and hopes that they continue to do great things.
After leaving the airport, the victorious ladies were taken on a motorcade throughout Christ Church and St. Michael. (MP)

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