We cannot continue to place last says Browne
June 12, 2009
We cannot continue to place last says Browne



Systems are being put in place to at least ensure that St. Vincent and the Grenadines, as host, does not occupy its recently patented position of last, among the four islands in this year’s Windward Island Schools Games.{{more}}

A Sports Fiesta in which the local contingent will have motivational talks, service from a Chiropractor and indeed fully taken care of by way of sustenance for the day, will take place this Saturday at the Arnos Vale Sports Complex.

In addition, efforts are in place to get a Nutritionist and a Sports Psychologist to work with the students prior to their participation in the Games, set for July 25, to August 2.

This was among measures that were made public by Minister of National Mobilisation Mike Browne, as he met with some members of the National Male Under-20 and the Senior Women’s Football teams last Monday at the Sion Hill Government School.

Determined to save this country’s face in terms of its performance at the Games, Browne, despite admitting that the preparations should have been intensified some time ago, urged those present, many of whom should be part of the local contingent, “to work harder”.

Browne promised to engage all the resources available to get the team to a point of being competitive.

He lamented that this country cannot continue to come last and as host should strive for better results.

“You need to take your game to a higher level. It is important to push yourselves academically also,” the Minister advised the sports ambassadors.

Contending that the past months were set aside for football and school, the time leading up to the Games will be “focussed training”.

The Minister also told the prospective selectees “to prepare to flex”, as the Games are multi disciplined and require the athletes to double up in areas other than their specialised field.

Browne revealed to those present that once they are part of the final 48-member team, they will receive a stipend for the next two months, as they will fall under the Youth Empowerment Service (YES) Programme.

He said that he was extending the remuneration to the Schools’ team – an arrangement that has already been in place with the Under-20 footballers, since their participation in the final of the Caribbean Zone which was held here in January for the CONCACAF grouping to this year’s FIFA Under-20 World Cup.

Browne in his discourse, at times, discarded the formalities of oratory and spoke frankly with the players, as he challenged the young sportsmen and women not to be tardy in their preparation, and to take the arrangement seriously.

In return, the students will be expected to attend the training sessions regularly, and will be required to assist the Department of Sports in their sporting ventures.

The Windward Islands School Games, which will see participation from Dominica, St. Lucia, Grenada and St. Vincent and the Grenadines as host, will have competitions in Athletics, Basketball (male and female), Volleyball (male and female), Football, and Netball.

The Games are being sponsored by Canadian Bank Note (CBN) and Winlott Inc. through the National Lotteries Authority.

The revived National School Games Committee, headed by Deputy Chief Education Officer Luis de Shong, is responsible for the organisation of the weeklong event.

Both Ministries are expected to collaborate and put on a good show, both on and off the field, courts and track.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines last hosted the Games in 2005.