On Target
July 29, 2022
Preparing to go full throttle again

Undoubtedly, it is evident that whilst we are still in the pandemic, there is some semblance of sports returning in all its glory and splendour.

Indeed, the advent of the coronavirus, which turned out to be a global health threat, an economic beast, as well as social and psychological inhibitor, left scars on all sectors of human existence.

But thankfully, there is some glimmer of hope that its force is not as devastating as two years ago, despite a few countries still experiencing spikes in cases.

In the scheme of things though, we here in St Vincent and the Grenadines may have been “more normal” than others, as somehow we enjoyed a greater freedom of movement and had more elbow room to operate.

The cautious approach in response to the coronavirus did not allow for full-scale national sporting events, but things were done in pockets and snippets, enough to keep our people in a proper mental state.

So here we are at the juncture to get going again, with all sporting events at the community and the national scales.

As is the current case, there are many competitive sports taking place at the community level, inclusive of the contact sports, so there is no cause for any delay to have the national programmes back in gear.

Seemingly, there is that ready done atmosphere for sports to thrive, created by the mere operations of Vincentians, who in their somewhat flagrant approach, have handled the pandemic well.

Instructively too, the cue for the return of sports in full, has to be the hosting of Vincy Mas 2022, in which there were large gatherings, mask-less individuals interacting and in very close proximities of one another.

Importantly, with Carnival happening, albeit in some scaled down manner, there were no major outbreaks in cases, sports has to be good to go.

Many lessons have been learnt from the lay off in sports and its wholesome return must be welcomed in open arms.

Of course, there would have been casualties, as some sporting disciplines would have lost ground and membership at all levels, therefore, the restart would be a bit tedious for them.

It goes without saying that there is a thirst and hunger for sports displayed in many countries across the world, and St Vincent and the Grenadines is no exception.

But as St Vincent and the Grenadines’ sports prepare to be nice again, the fall outs caused by the vagaries of the pandemic, adjustments have to be made.

This, as the pandemic would have affected all, and corporate support may not be forthcoming.

Relatedly, within the last seven months or so, we are experiencing a continuous rise in the price of commodities, which would certainly impinge on economic activities, trickling down to the amount of financial resources available to sporting organisations.

Here lies some of the concerns which would have accrued over the last two years, resulting in the domino effect.

It therefore calls on national sporting associations to devise ways and means of ensuring they maintain membership, retrieve those who may have lost interest, whilst keeping development at the forefront of their organizational agenda.

Additionally, it may be an ask for some sporting teams and clubs to think seriously on merging resources, as both human and otherwise are not as accessible as before.

Too, our national sporting associations have to look at their structures, and map out their courses strategically, to get the best returns from their members.

Faced with this juggling act, there is the need for creativity, harsh decision making, reality checks and altering of their modus operandi, while still maximizing the best from their slender resources.

Sports in St Vincent and the Grenadines will return in force, but it cannot be business as usual.