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Solidified nonchalance

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The 2009 National Sports Awards came and went last Saturday night.

Yes, it did, but was the objective of recognizing excellence and dignity through sports really and truly achieved?{{more}}

Again, as I wrote about this same time last year, there was an air of nonchalance covering the build up to last Saturday’s awards ceremony. The actual event was treated with indifference, especially from the national associations.

As it was, it just happened, because it has to happen. But was the response a reflection of the way some view sports in St. Vincent and the Grenadines?

The fact that there cannot be a settled date on the event, preferably, earlier in the year, which would set the tone for the next eleven months of performance, tells the scant respect the associations have for themselves, and more so, the athletes they represent.

The issue of late entries again plagued the ceremony this year.

Additionally, some seemed just to throw a few persons in the fray, just to be represented, another example of how some associations set out to water down the event, which should, and which was intended to be a showcase of the year’s output in sports.

It is time that the National Sports Council (NSC), under whose portfolio the awards come, show some grit and sanction those associations which continue to be tardy.

It is true that the NSC may be hamstrung by various factors, but they, on all grounds, should exhibit a high level of proficiency and professionalism. However, the best efforts of the NSC may be in vain in some instances, as tardiness is in the DNA of some of those who run the respective associations.

I have and will always continue to have problems with the NSC having to extend deadlines for submissions.

But if the said associations are serious about their disciplines, they would have their internal award ceremonies from which the recipients would simply go forth to the national awards.

Team Athletics SVG and the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Cricket Association are the stand out performers in this respect., as they over the years, have had their awards, prior to the national occasion. The SVG Cycling Union followed suit last year. The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation staged theirs earlier this year, but it was of a different nature.

Surely, some new life must be breathed into the lungs of the annual recognition exercise.


Appoint the judges early and let them throughout the year monitor the performances of all the sportsmen and women, then short list them.

I get the distinct impression that there is a lack of authenticity in the submissions from some of the associations. At times, when I heard the citations, maybe I must have been in hibernation or suffering from a prolonged bout of amnesia to not remember some of the performances or have any record of them.

Similarly, the media awards should not be left to the submissions of anyone, but be adjudicated by a panel from January 1, each year.

Again, as I have pointed out in a previous review of the National Sports Awards, the Sports Personality should be the one who impacts the most in terms of profiling the name of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

He or she is never given the task to promote the ideals of sports, or made to attend national functions which in any way gives credence to their status as Sports Personality of the Year.

It is time also that we see a return of past national players and other contributors to sports over the years be used as the ones who present the prizes to the winners of the various.

This gives those who blazed the trail an opportunity to be recognized in some small measure, as well as a way of reconnecting the present with the past.

The challenges of coming up with a near perfect judging system and a better format of the awards are challenging, but not insurmountable, but must be pursued with the intent to make the occasion one which is always remembered for its good qualities.

Still on is the call for the complete removal of the Mound at the Sion Hill Playing Field.