- The winner of the main award to get overseas training
The partnership between Wijeya Newspapers and Dialog Axiata in dishing out the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy/Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year has been an overwhelmingly successful in the past two seasons.
With the recent successes the two giants in different trades are eager to come out with the third instalment of the most looked-forward to event by the schoolboy and schoolgirl cricketers with the official announcement and launch of the ‘Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy/Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year 2019’.
The competition, as initiated last year, will kick off from this week, with the commencement of the Singer Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2018/2019, as performances of players and teams will be thoroughly observed until the end of the season. This will make the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy/Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year, run along with the First XI cricket season as last year.
Concurrently, as anticipated, voting for the Most Popular Schoolboy Cricketer and Most Popular Schoolgirl Cricketer will kick-start from next Sunday, October 14 and will go on for 26 consecutive weeks.
As such, coupons will be made available for readers to vote for their favourite schoolboy or schoolgirl cricketer from 14 October with the first appearing in the Sunday Times. Coupons will continuously be published for 26 weeks in the English weekend, the Sunday Times, English dailies Daily Mirror, Daily FT, Sinhala dailies Lankadeepa and Ada. This year there will be two new additions to the fleet of Wijeya Newspapers publications with Tamil Mirror and Deshaya coming on board to make the ‘Most Popular’ competition far more reachable.
In addition Dialog Axiata will open its web portal for supporters to vote for their favourite schoolboy or schoolgirl cricket. Like last season, there will be a different method to follow the digital process of voting for the favourite schoolboy or schoolgirl cricketer to make them the Most Popular winner.
As usual schoolboy cricketers will come under different categories, mainly All-Island and Emerging. All schools competing in the ongoing Singer Inter-School Division I tournament will be categorised under the All-Island Schools while the remaining schools, competing under Division II and III categories, will come under Emerging Schools.
Last year the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year turned a new leaf by becoming the first to add the Girls’ category. Schoolgirl cricketers were acknowledged at the glittering awards ceremony held at the BMICH in addition to awarding the ‘Most Popular Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year 2017’, for the very first time in history. This year too, the competition will be open for schoolgirls and supporters to see their favourite cricketer from girls’ schools being crowned as the queen of cricket.
Eligibility, online voting and player registration
As usual players who have represented their respective school in First XI cricket and with a tally of 400 or above runs and 25 wickets or above in the last season will be automatically eligible for the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Most Popular Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2018 competition. This restriction will not affect the schoolgirl cricketers, however.
With the introduction of the digital voting mechanism the entire interface of the competition is expected to reach another level. However players who wish to enter the fray will have to confirm their participation by registering online with www.dialog.lk/cricket. Even schoolboy and schoolgirl cricketers whose names are entered into the competition by readers must register.
Players who registered online will be officially scrutinised of their eligibility and entered to the online voting mechanism, while the customary voting through coupons will be still on. The dates for registration and scrutinising methods will be notified soon.
Both coupon votes and online votes will be counted on a weekly basis and the official results will be published every week beginning from 21 October on the five newspapers and its websites. The deadline for online voting will be Wednesday noon while for coupons it will be Thursday noon, weekly.
At the same time readers who help the young cricketers reach the helm this season will also be rewarded on a weekly basis. As in the past two years, Dialog Axiata will be generous in giving out gifts to four lucky winners among the voters, encouraging our readers to be more attached to the contest as well as the future cricketing talents of Sri Lanka.
Besides the Most Popular competition, all focus will be on who will become the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy/Schoolgirl Cricketer of the Year 2019, which is the main feature of the entire process. Award winners will solely be selected based on their performances and what matters end of the day will be the amount of energy they dish out as batsmen, bowlers, fielders and allrounders.
The judges of the selection panel of the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year, belonging to different components of the local cricketing structure, will be observing the talents of the youngsters during the ongoing school cricket season. The engagements of the Sri Lanka Under-19 team, which is made up by the best among schoolboy cricketers of the island, too will be followed closely by them. The schoolgirls too will be watched closely on how they perform at the tournaments conducted by the Sri Lanka Schools Cricket Association. This will be to pick the deserving talents at the final selection which will be held soon after the conclusion of the school cricket season and duly honour them at the end of the season.
Special message from the organisers
“Thinking out of the box is one of our great strengths and during the past three years we have been just the same. Now this year the two organisations have come with yet another first in our cricketing annals. The organising committee of the Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year is pleased to announce that from the year 2019 onwards, the winner of the coveted title ‘Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year main award’ will be given the opportunity to extend his cricketing skills via an overseas training at a Tier 1 rated cricket academy. We wish all contenders for the prestigious Dialog 4G-the Sunday Times Schoolboy Cricketer of the Year 2019, the very best for the ongoing school’s cricket tournament.”