Progress over personality in sports
On Target
January 12, 2024
Progress over personality in sports

As St Vincent and the Grenadines strives for better standards all round, greater economic growth and development and a safer and more peaceful society, we have to get a few things right.

And, as part of the whole, sports is not exempted from getting its act together, so that the true potentialities can be realised.

Yes, we often complain about facilities, funding, lack of opportunities among other factors have been listed as the hindrances to sporting development here in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Whilst they are all plausible and justifiable causes of the relatively poor results that our national teams accumulate, our inability to be professional is one of the undergirded reasons.

Unfortunately, little is paid to looking at the bigger picture and place the betterment of sports above everything else.

As humans, we are different in every sense, hence our personalities, tolerance levels, values systems and other trait vary.

However, as sports administrators, it is not about you; it is about the people you serve, who are equally important.

It is because of the persons who do all the hard work, meaning the sportsmen and women, who give cause for all sports administrators to claim executive positions and have their resumes filled.

But as they wrangle, sports in St Vincent and the Grenadines continues to suffer at the hands of these adults who cannot divorce their personal grudges, beefs and fall-outs with their administrative colleagues.

Reports are that a few national sporting associations are bursting at their seams, as clashes among personnel have become so heated that they are at the point of exploding.

Wrangling within national sporting associations/ federations and unions are not novel, however, in recent times, they seem to have been glorified.

In spite of their differences, sports administrators have to learn to co-exist and acknowledge that there will never be perfection in this life.

Sports in St Vincent and the Grenadines, is too small for the constant bickering.

This type of emerging innate culture that there must be bacchanal in sports, is a detrimental act to the respective disciplines.

Persons of a certain repute are not attracted to sporting organisations whose daily business and misunderstandings are ventilated in the public space.

But where do we start to address and reverse the obstructive, debilitating and counter- productive scourges that are plaguing Vincentian sports?

It is not a rhetorical question, as the response lies with the persons who are the root causes of the melee.

They, from the time of being elected, should purpose in their minds to serve the organisation with gusto, sincerity and with the professional mindset.

Yes, persons have their day-to-day challenges to contend with, hence the burden of voluntary service on sporting organisations should not add to one’s woes.

However, sports administration is a breeding ground for communication, tolerance, patience, sympathy, empathy, among other life skills, not otherwise acquired.

This column, though, in no way is suggesting that elected members must tolerate disrespect from others, but the handling of inter-personal relationships in the most efficacious, amiable and less toxic manner, is the pathway towards lessening bouts of animosity.

Neither is this column hinting that everything will be honky dory if we remain docile.

Sports, in its purest form, is a conduit for social cohesion, an outlet for the exposition of talent, an economic earner, and a physical engagement, just to name of few of its attributes.

Significantly, sports should not be the victim of others who do not have its interest nor the people who play sport, at heart.