A striking eight-foot bronze statue of outstanding cricketer Sir Wesley Winfield Hall, in delivery stride, now adorns Kensington Oval.
And, during the unveiling ceremony Sunday night, Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley saluted the fierce fast bowler, while saying Government intends to ensure that as many of the cricketing legends are memorialised.
Ms. Mottley told those present: “We will do all in our power as a Government to continue to ensure that you will not only be honoured, but that the Legends of Barbados must now not remain as a cricketing legacy, but that if we are to move to the next level, then we must merge the legacy of the legends with the current requirement of what we must do to earn….
“It is this Government’s view that that site, across diagonally [from Kensington Oval], should one day become a location, in the near future, for a hotel that could be branded after the Legends of Barbados.”
The Prime Minister underscored the importance of the “marriage” of tourism and cricket, stressing that it must not just be in the history books, but must be reflected in the ambition of this nation.
“So that we use the best of our past and the best of our present to help us earn and create opportunities for average Barbadians to invest and own that hotel…. If it (the hotel) does not happen, we have only ourselves to blame because our legacy, as given by all of you gentlemen, but in particular by you giants, is one that should propel us to want to maintain excellence and be at the top of our game always,” she insisted.
Describing Sir Wesley Hall as a man of integrity, she said from childhood she admired him and was influenced by him as a political figure, even though they were on different political sides.
She continued: “It never stopped you from reaching out to me as a young politician… and the guidance that I got from you was the same as I got from those who belong to my side and that speaks volumes.”
The statue of Sir Wes Hall has been erected alongside that of National Hero and cricketing great, The Right Excellent Sir Garfield Sobers.
Dr. Kerry Hall said her father has been an inspiration to his children, who have given him the title of the world’s greatest father. She described him as a man of integrity and humility, who devoted his life to serve mankind.
During the night, video tributes were shown in which accolades were showered on Sir Wesley Hall by several outstanding cricketers, including former teammates, Sir Charles Griffith and Sir Gary Sobers.
In his reply, Sir Wesley Hall thanked all those involved in the project, including the sculptor Jason Hope and Chris deCaires. He regaled the audience with various cricketing stories, saying it was a great privilege to play cricket for the West Indies.
Eighty-three-year-old Sir Wesley Hall is also a former West Indies team manager, West Indies Board President, former Government Minister and a minister of religion.