YOU can really tell that a sport has gone into the mainstream when it secures sponsorship from a major global brand.
So Longford cricketers will surely take heart with the news that Toyota is to sponsor a fleet of vehicles for Cricket Ireland to, in the words of the marketing people “support the operational and business needs of Cricket Ireland, and to also support the strategic development programme for the sport in Ireland”.
Commenting on the announcement, Ian Corbett, Marketing Operations Manager for Toyota Ireland said, “We, at Toyota Ireland, are delighted to announce this sponsorship with Cricket Ireland.
“Cricket Ireland has emerged as a top class professional sporting organisation. Its strategic plan to 2015 is ambitious and focused and we look forward to supporting their efforts to grow and strengthen the game in Ireland.
Dennis Cousins, Head of Commercial, Cricket Ireland said: “Cricket Ireland are delighted to welcome Toyota on board as our new Official Car Sponsor.
“Toyota’s national presence and popularity supports our plans to build on the increased levels of interest, participation and coverage of cricket throughout Ireland.
“We are excited about this new relationship which brings together two organizations who have great heritage in Ireland, and who are both committed to continuous improvement and excellence with equally matched high ambitions.
“We look forward to working with Toyota into the future on our journey to becoming a Full Member Test Nation.”
The Irish Cricket Team are ranked number 10 in the world in T20 Cricket and recently competed in the T20 World Cup in Sri Lanka in Sept/October 2012.
The team are ranked No.11 in 50 over cricket while the Irish Women’s team are ranked No.10. Ireland is also the top associate cricket nation in the world.
There are currently over 34,000 actively participating in cricket in Ireland with in the region of 140 Cricket Clubs, including the Longford club, and over 900 Senior and Junior teams in all of Ireland.