On behalf of the sponsors, Singer and Akai, it is my pleasant duty to address the audience today.
Needless to say, Cricket and Singer is synonymous in our part of the world. Since 1994, over a span of 4 memorable years, we have sponsored 8 top notch International Cricket tournaments, the last two being together with our global Associate company, Akai Electric of Japan. In this manner, we have brought joy to many of our consumers and cricket lovers in the region and also helped strengthen our brand image universally.
A lesser known fact to the media and the public, is that we were the pioneer organizers of the 4 Nation Cricket Tournament, having promoted and organised the Singer World Series in 1994 and 1996, which has left an indelible mark in the Cricket world.
Our relationship with the Board of Control for Cricket in Sri Lanka has been close and fruitful and we have provided our Board with a strong and supportive sponsor for a period of over 10 years. We look forward to continuing that cordial relationship, as the Sri Lankan team prepares to defend their title as World Champions for another reign.
Cricket today is a part of the Sri Lankan nation. It reaches out to every village and home and strives to bind a divided nation together. Cricket and our Cricketers bring a ray of hope to a troubled nation, even if it is for a brief and fleeting moment.
As a Corporate leader in the Region, we consider it a privilege to sponsor and be a part of the Singer Akai Nidahas Trophy to commemorate our 50 years of Nationhood and we wish the Board of Control every success in this endeavour.
Sri Lanka is hosting two friendly countries who have been very supportive of our cricket, during a period we moved from fledgling to World Champs, namely, India and New Zealand. Such a combat between 3 talented teams should provide rare entertainment to the whole nation and to the international networks covered by T.V. and Broadcasting. We commend the Board for scheduling 3 of the 10 games in Galle, in it's endeavour to promote Cricket in the Provinces, where lies the future of the game.
On behalf of Singer and Akai, may I now conclude by wishing all teams a spectacular fortnight of Cricket and may the best team come out as winners.