THE much-anticipated Heath Streak consultancy and sports development initiative was officially launched on Thursday evening at a local hotel.
The hallmark sporting ceremony in the City of Kings was graced by former Zimbabwe national team players like renowned cricket commentator Mpumelelo “Pommie” Mbangwa, Grant Flower, the current national team batting coach, as well as Wayne James, who made appearances for Zimbabwe in the late 1980s and early 1990s as a stylish batsman and excellent fielder, as well as Dirk Viljoen, among others.
Addressing delegates at the gala fundraising dinner, Streak said he was overwhelmed by the support he had received from the corporate world.
“I am honoured and overwhelmed by the amount of support that this initiative has received from Rajesh Modi and the corporate world. I am proud to be able to share the knowledge I have gained in the past 20 years as a player and a coach with the young cricket players. It is important that we as Zimbabweans give our children an opportunity to dream big and I believe that this initiative will improve the quality of life of these children,” Streak said.
Guest of honour outgoing Education, Sport, Arts and Culture minister David Coltart hailed Streak for setting up the initiative saying it would play a key role in restoring Zimbabwe cricket back to being one of the producers of the best players in the world.
“Heath Streak’s initiative steps in where the government and Zimbabwe Cricket have failed, that is in developing the sport of cricket. This initiative will play a major role in restoring cricket in Zimbabwe to the heights we have seen before. I will also commend Rajesh Modi and other corporates for supporting the initiative and I hope you will continue to support it,” Coltart said.
Modi, the major sponsor of the initiative through his retail company. Bellevue Spar, bemoaned the lack of social responsibility by corporates in the country.
“It is the responsibility of the corporate to give back to the community what they have gained. If they chose to sponsor at least five children at $1 000 each, I believe that the country could produce more Heath Streaks in the years to come,” Modi said.
Joseph Rego who has been Streak’s agent for the past 14 years and is the chief executive officer of the Heath Streak Consultancy, said he was determined to sustain the initiative and draw more support for it.
Other dignitaries present to witness the launch of this ground breaking initiative included members of the Sports and Recreation Commission, members of different sporting boards, Zimbabwe and India national cricket team players as well as various
representatives from the corporate world.