There is of course the reality that not all of the Caribbean countries fully understand and appreciate what constitutes sports tourism and some simply use the term merely because it may now be in vogue. For some there is as yet nothing in place to even begin to conceptualise the potential of sports tourism relative to the national economies. Others are probably hoping that following the CWC2007 everything will simply fall into place and sports tourism dollars will fall from the skies like manna.
Where there has been no creative structures established for sports tourism the CWC2007 will yield nothing of substance that is sustainable in this important area of sports tourism.
The International Cricket Council, ICC, has already secured global and regional sponsors that have ensured the organisation a rather sound treasury following the conclusion of the event. But this aspect of the CWC2007 like the television rights does not really translate in any to windfall financial benefits to the region. Indeed there are those who would readily suggest that even the West Indies Cricket Board, WICB, will probably find out that whatever finds are allocated to it by the ICC following the competition’s conclusion will probably only be enough to clear its indebtedness and leave a pittance for the future. That means being right back to basics.
The Governments of the region, for all of their unbelievable financial outlays will all be hard pressed to determine just how long it will take before they begin to see the returns impacting the national treasuries.
In several of the Caribbean countries there is already grave concern that while there are benefits from the hosting of the CWC2007 enough of these are not likely to filter down to the small man involved in business. Barbadian, Richard Sealey, has already claimed, “I meet too many people, too many ordinary Barbadians, who are of the view that in spite of popular suggestions that it is going to be an economic bonanza for Barbados, that there is nothing tangible in it for them.” (Barbados Advocate 12 Feb. 2007)