Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
The election to decide who leads the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) for the next two years will be held today at the Jamaica Conference Centre.
Incumbent first vice-president, Milton Henry, and business executive, Wilford 'Billy' Heaven are challenging for the top post in what will be the main item on the agenda of the association's annual general meeting.
In what some are predicting to be a close contest, both candidates who have exuded confidence, will be seeking to get the nod of 101 delegates on the association's voters' list.
The delegates, who have the option of either attending and voting directly or via a proxy, is made up of national clubs and parish associations, as well as life, affiliate, and associate members.
"Our team is ready and raring to go," said Heaven, chief executive officer of the government-run CHASE Fund.
"We are pretty satisfied with our preparations, and having presented to the delegates our ideas and plans, we are confident of victory."
The former executive director of the National Development Foundation who has been publicly endorsed by several parish association presidents, also said he is looking to win by a comfortable margin.
"I don't expect it to be close based on the feedback I have been getting," he outlined.
"We have been getting a lot of traction, especially as it relates to the parish associations and along with other expected support, we are anticipating a fairly comfortable victory."
Henry, in the meanwhile, who has the open support of outgoing president, Lyndel 'Muddy' Wright - who opted not to seek re-election - believes his team has done the groundwork and should come out on top.
"We have been doing our canvassing and groundwork, and believe we have enough support to win," said Henry.
"Some say it could be close. However, I believe that this present administration has done enough work over the past two years and come the election, we will get the support of the delegates."
Henry, an engineer by profession, explained that among the list achievements of the current administration is the soliciting of sponsorships totalling $64 million, bringing the association's accounts up-to-date and the national women's and under-19 teams winning the regional double.
Heaven, on the other hand, who is currently chairman of the association's finance and audit committee, says there needs to be a change of the guard if cricket is to maintain its status as a priority sport.
He says he hopes to make a difference by bringing leadership, strengthening the current management structures, as well as raising capital to, among other things, install floodlights at Sabina Park.
The day will also see the election of 12 other members to the board of directors, who will serve the association for the next two years.
Wilford 'Billy' Heaven - president
Dr Donovan Bennett - first vice-president
Courtney Walsh - second vice-president
Fritz Harris - honorary secretary
Clinton Clarke - assistant secretary
Wayne Sutherland - treasurer
Hopeton Morrison - assistant treasurer
Milton Henry - president
Major Radcliffe Daley - first vice-president
Keith Walford - second vice-president
Junior Stewart - honorary secretary
Major Marlon Kennedy - assistant secretary
Nigel Logan - treasurer
Mark Hill - assistant treasurer