Protecting Trinidad's women holds special significance for Joshua Da Silva

By February 28, 2021

When Joshua Da Silva dedicated his 92-run match-winning knock in Bangladesh to Andrea Bharratt, Ashanti Riley and other Trinidadian women who have been victims of violence, he did so in part because a recent horrifying incident made the matter personal.

Back in 2019, four suspicious-looking men trailed his older sister Danielle, who was on her way home from a gas station. When she realized what was happening she drove to a nearby police station which caused the men to turn and drive away.

It was a positive ending but the memory has lived with him ever since and was stirred by recent incidents in his home country while he was away on West Indies duty.

In late December 2020, the body of 18-year-old Riley was found with multiple stab wounds in a river off Upper La Canoa Road in Santa Cruz. Bharratt, a 23-year-old university graduate was abducted in late January. Her body was found in a wooded area in the Heights of Aripo days later.

Both incidents triggered waves of anger and anxiety in the twin-island republic that has been grappling with seemingly increasing incidents of violence against women and prompted Da Silva to act.

He called his sister to tell her what he wanted to do that day in Bangladesh said a family member, who said they backed Joshua 100 per cent but suggested that he first seek permission from Cricket West Indies before taking any action. They also suggested he seek the help of cricket commentator and former West Indies fast bowler Ian Bishop, to get the word out.

It all worked out to plan.

After the West Indies completed their 17-run victory, Da Silva posted on his Instagram that he was dedicating his performance to Bharratt and the women in his home country. The gesture generated a positive response from across the Caribbean, especially in his home country.

Speaking to Sportsmax.TV recently, the 22-year-old cricketer explained that he wanted to put his growing popularity to good use.

“I really wanted to show my support to the women of Trinidad and Tobago at this time. Therefore, I used the biggest platform that I have in order to do so,” he said.

“Ashanti and Andrea are two of too many women that have been adversely affected. Enough is enough and we have lost too many lives. We need to protect our women.”

According to the United Nations’ global database on violence against women, 30 per cent of Trinidadian women suffer physical and or sexual abuse at the hands of a lifetime partner. Six per cent have suffered physical or sexual intimate partner violence within the last 12 months and 19 per cent suffer from sexual violence from a non-partner.

 

 

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

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