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It smells!


Cover your noses and mouths; otherwise your internal organs will be contaminated by the stench emanating from the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tennis Association.

Needed urgently is some fumigation, as the pungent odour is almost unbearable.{{more}}

Started as a whiff a few weeks ago, the injury has now reached the stage of gangrene.

And, as one former executive member aptly put it: “the Association has been fractured beyond repair”.

The issues confronting the Association and the dirty linen have been washed in the public sink-the airwaves and print media.

It was disgusting (to be conservative) and almost synonymous with child’s play to hear current President Anthony Boyea and former President Grant Connell challenging each other’s integrity last Saturday night on a Sports Radio Call-in Programme. This despicable display continued last Monday night as the Association staged a meeting at the National Tennis Centre.

What ensued at Monday night’s proceedings reminded me of some viragos that once lived in my community, not of learned men and women of repute.

Obviously, the anti Boyea fraction had its input, and he, lacking the poise, reciprocated.

But that is the extent of the sport which many perceived to be a knight in shining armour.

In the melee, Boyea is almost like a loner, as he lacks the support from his Executive members. Whatever support he has is minimal. But Boyea seems as if he does not want to budge, while the walls around him are crumbling. I, therefore, ask Mr. Boyea, why are you holding on for dear life?

Please, do the honourable thing and demit your post, as you are the most unwanted in the Tennis fraternity.

Even if the current impasse is resolved, would you Mr. Boyea look your opponents in the eyes and really trust them? I doubt it. For your detractors, you have overstayed your welcome.

Glossed over by tournaments, mouthing, an exclusive facility, and other back ups, the administration of the affairs of Tennis can only be likened to a piece of costume jewelry.

To learn that successive executives of the Association have not presented audited financial statements is untenable. In fact, there have been no such audited documents for the past three years.

Immersed in an administrative cesspit, basic book keeping, secretarial and other organization practices were not adhered to. I would have left such inefficient approaches to management to a wayside village sporting organization, which operates out of someone’ s living room, spare room or his or her verandah.

I am gleaning from the discussions, accusations, innuendos and allegations coming out of last Monday’s meeting that there is also a clash of personalities and laziness on the part of Executive members, both present and past, that has given rise to autocracy.

I am appalled at the level to which the sport has sunk.

It was almost unbelievable that it was revealed that pertinent decisions of the Tennis Association were not minuted. This has led me to question the authenticity of the information sent by some national sporting associations to the adjudicators of the annual exercise of National Sports Awards.

The operations of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tennis Association make these awards farcical, since it was awarded Association of the Year 2007 at the ceremony held last January.

Maybe, the time has come for the NSC to pencil in a clause of stripping associations and athletes when such transgressions are committed during the period judged for recognition.

Follow the lead set by the International Olympic Committee that strips drug cheats of their medal, once it is found to be obtained under the use of enhanced substances.

As I have asked others before, can the members of the Tennis Association look themselves in the mirror and say that they are well pleased with their demeanour and input in taking Tennis to another level?

Those who lack such maturity can take a leaf from the book of former Vice President of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Netball Association, Sonja Lewis, who despite her differences with the leadership, put that behind her and assisted unselfishly with the National Under-16 netball team on their recent sojourn in the CNA Championships in Antigua and Barbuda. Take a bow, Mrs Lewis.

I am, therefore, calling on the new Minister of Sports, the National Olympic Committee, the National Sports Council to intervene in the affairs that are rocking the SVGTA.

More so, I am suggesting that the National Lotteries Authority (NLA) cease to fund those associations which are in turmoil.

Many are using the NLA as their ‘cash cow’ to bale them out of their financial ruts, which in most cases are self inflicted.

But what is hurting is that no national sport is free of problems of one kind or another. Who will it be next week? Your guess is as good as mine.

There is no guessing that this column will continue to make it known of its disapproval of the Mound at the Sion Hill Playing Field.

So, too, to the Executive of the SVGFF. What is the salary of Technical Director Stewart John Hall?