Sports is against the ropes
Sports in St Vincent and the Grenadines has been hit an untimely blow. Like a wounded boxer, sports is proverbially against the ropes, as there is bleeding from the nose, cuts over the eyes and we are down for the count.
As it is, sports is receiving jabs, upper-cuts and punches to all parts of its body.
Having already taken the standing eight count, we cannot at this time throw in the towel and give up the fight to our opponents, in this case, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and most recently, the aftermath of the volcanic eruptions of our La Soufriere.
Whilst there has been an obvious disruption in sporting activities, initially because of the pandemic, things turned worse in the past two months, serving up added dimensions.
These are against the realities that we have been able to have some sporting competitions, albeit on a reduced scale.
Additionally, in cases where there are no organised competitions, most other sporting disciplines are able to have scrimmages, sweat sessions and generally persons on their own accord, have endeavoured to stay active.
Too, there are the virtual training sessions, webinars and skills challenges that are taking place.
Not devaluing these measures, but they can only suffice and sustain the interest of our sportsmen and women for a short period.
There is nothing more rewarding to these persons, than to be physically engaged.
Hence, the worry is the continuous laid-back approach of some organisations and national sporting bodies, which have seemingly accepted defeat from the challenges, and have decidedly resorted to think nothing else can be done in the circumstances.
This column in previous exposition recently, specifically reminded sports authorities that the show must go on, despite what we are enduring.
The movement should go a step further, with a national response, as the waiting time for some wholesome return of sports is being protracted.
One therefore is calling out the Hon. Frederick Stephenson, who has the responsibility for Sports under his wings, to become visible and be the choir master and lead the way in bringing together the stakeholders to chart the course, to have sports going again.
We cannot be too proactive to do so, as the virus will always be with us. Similarly, there will always be natural disasters which would affect our lives from time to time.
The occasion now presents itself for the Minister, who is yet to make a meaningful impact on the national sporting landscape since his appointment to the portfolio last November.
It is time for the minister to show his mettle, exhibit leadership and put a progress mark on sports here in St Vincent and the Grenadines, once and for all.
You, Mr. Minister, have to call out the various national sporting associations, get their views and map out the pathway for sports’ recovery here in St Vincent and the Grenadines in the shortest possible time frame.
Come at the centre of the ring and go toe to toe with the challengers, Mr. Minister.
Anything short of this would be tantamount to failure in your duties to lead your troops out of despair and into that oasis of hope.
It may seem on the surface to some, that our sportsmen and women are coping with the mounting discomfort that the absence of sporting competitions is having on persons’ well- being.
Unfortunately, this is not the case, as there is evidence that a few have started to buckle under the mental pressure of not doing what they are capable of doing best.
Let us save sports from getting that technical knock-out, by putting in the necessary systems to ensure that as a nation, we salvage what is left of the God–given talent which those who have chosen the respective sporting disciplines as their forte.
We as a nation have to show that will and the best time is now, as leaving things to meander and evolve, will accelerate our regression.