Jamaica may very well not have a team to support when the Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) begins this year.
According to CEO of the Jamaica Tallawahs, Jeff Miller, time is running out on his organization to confirm where they will be playing in the CPL and as of today, have a month to make a decision.
From where the CEO sits, he has been getting the run around from the Jamaican Government with nothing concrete in the way of financial support forthcoming.
The problem, Miller explains, is that it costs approximately US$2.5 million to operate a season, and the Jamaican government has not provided the kind of financial support that would make it feasible to continue.
Last year the Tallawahs organization lost US$1.8 million and lost 1.5 the year before that.
“We have some options and we want to exercise those options. We have given the government some deadlines and they have failed to meet all these deadlines we have given them over the last three months,” said Miller.
“We just can’t continue in the way we have in the past. We have no support,” said Miller.
Miller believes the impact of the CPL is greater than the Jamaican government realizes and that they are passing up an opportunity which has the potential to be bigger than they ever thought.
“The government just doesn’t see the value of the Tallawahs. I’ve been getting a lot of talk for the last two to three months about having discussions with the sports minister and the prime minister and they haven’t come to anything,” said Miller.
The latest study on the impact of the CPL in Jamaica, suggested there were gains of more than US$10 million, as well as 2400 room nights for hotels on the island.
According to the CEO, the Tallawahs have compromised but haven’t seen any reciprocation and so, as of now, his hopes aren’t very high that the Tallawahs will remain a Jamaican franchise.
“They’ve said we have to play all the games in Jamaica and I agree, we agree. They wanted us to spread the games over a period of time, we agreed, and we came up with a temporary schedule even up to the semis. So at this time we have to make a decision about where we play,” said Miller.
While the trend would suggest the Tallawahs are moving to the United States, Miller has indicated that his team will remain in the Caribbean.
“We have a couple of offers and especially one of them looks a very sweet deal,” said Miller. (Paul-Andre Walker)