Basseterre, St. Kitts, August 01, 2017 (SKNIS): The branding of the St. Kitts Tourism Authority: “St. Kitts – Follow Your Heart” is now featured on the front of the jersey of the St. Kitts & Nevis Patriots, as the cricket team readies to compete in the upcoming 2017 Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

The CPL Twenty20 tournament begins on August 04, while the Patriots’ first game is on August 05, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Carlene Henry-Morton, said the branding initiative will drive “worldwide awareness of St. Kitts as a tourist destination with so much to offer.”

A press release from the Twenty20 tournament organizers reported that viewership of the 2016 games saw a record global audience of 134 million persons which was up 44 percent over the numbers recorded in 2015. Television viewing in markets in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, India, sub-Saharan Africa, Australia and the Middle East all increased. An additional 5.3 million viewers from 40 countries around the world also tuned in to the 34 matches via Facebook Live, the report added.

“Clearly, CPL is continuing to grow and to attract bigger audiences. This translates into more exposure for St. Kitts and for the entire Caribbean region as a whole,” Mrs. Henry-Morton stated. “We in St. Kitts are certainly putting systems in place to take full advantage of this phenomenon and to highlight and showcase our rich culture, our excellent tourism product, and our warm and hospitable people to the U.S. market.”

The tourism official said that sports tourism is an important element of government’s strategy for tourism development and the CPL is part of this initiative, as thousands of people have travelled to the island over the past four years to witness cricket played louder at the Warner Park Cricket Stadium.

The slogan of the Nevis Tourism Authority – “Nevis Naturally” is featured on the back of the Patriots’ jersey.