In honour of Guyanese cricket greats, Guyanese manufacturer Natural Strokes Creations, has created a fantastic line of products called Nostalgia. The Nostalgia products symbolize improvised bats and balls that were used, and still are, by young Guyanese children and adults alike who enjoy the sport.
A part of Guyanese cricket history, the balls are made from balata sap which is a rubber material which is obtained by ‘bleeding’ the South American tree, Manilkara Bidentata, popularly known as the “bulletwood” tree. The sap is then boiled and molded into shape. The bats are carved from dried coconut branches.
As part of their commitment and love for cricket, Digicel seized the opportunity to present these nostalgic products to all of their guests who attended the first Digicel ODI in Guyana. Guyanese cricket legends, Lance Gibbs and Clive Lloyd who autographed the balata balls, were delighted at the bats and balls which they say brought back memories from their childhood days.
Clive Lloyd, recalled playing in his back yard with coconut branches: “I remember playing with dried coconut branches as a youngster in my back yard with my friends. If we didn’t get the coconut branches we resorted to pieces of wood. But the coconut branches really came in handy. Thanks to those branches I was able to learn a few things when it came to batting.”
Lance Gibbs relates: “The Nostalgia products are sure to bring back memories of playing cricket as a Guyanese youngster. As a cricket loving country, young boys and girls would get together whether it’s in the school yard, back yard or even in the streets to play a great game of cricket. We didn’t have the proper bats and balls so we used the dried branches as bats and made balata balls. This is a great initiative by Natural strokes and Digicel.”