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Following the Leeward trail of sporting success


The creeping dominance of schools and communities from the Leeward side of mainland St Vincent in the various sporting competitions held nationally here within the past two years, has prompted many to stand and take notice.{{more}}

Increasingly, the Leeward teams have had the niche of being the power houses of football, while track and field is keeping close on the heels, as that discipline has had its fair share of moments to applaud within recent times.

Following the trail of successes, within the past twelve months, gives credence to almost invincibility.

It was an all-Leeward affair in the 2013 Inter Community League Football Competition, as all divisions went to that locale.

In all repeats of 2012, Barrouallie retained the senior and Under-17; Layou – the Under-13 and South Leeward – the female title.

Layou also secured the Under-13 division of the 2012 National Club Championships.

Before those feats though, the Bethel High School claimed the senior division of the secondary schools competition, which closed off in December last year.

In the area of track and field the Layou Government School secured this year’s National Primary Schools’ Championships and the Central Leeward Secondary School pouched the National Relay Classics.

More success came the way of the Central Leeward Secondary, as they won the female segment of the inaugural Schools’ Cross Country Race, with the Petit Bordel Secondary copping the male component.

And, it was all Leeward schools in the NACAC OECS Road Relay Classics last month, as the Petit Bordel Secondary doubled up in the female and male devision and so did the Buccament Bay Primary in the primary schools catergory.

It is also worthy to note that the Bethel High School trumped the junior category of the schools’ netball and the Buccament Bay – the senior division.

Similarly, the Buccament Bay Secondary also procured the female basketball title.

Yes, it is a fact that students at these schools tend to remain at their institutions longer than those in the capital, for instance, but there must be other factors.

Also, the playing fields in these areas get little competition from outside forces; hence, there is a level of autonomy and exclusivity, where skills can be honed almost uninterrupted.

The youth football efforts in Campden Park, Layou and Barrouallie can account for the continuous production of national footballers.

Also, with all that is happening, it then follows to reason why most of the national footballers at all levels emerge from the bowels of the Leeward communities.

And, in putting things into perspective, the Barrouallie Sports Association is one of the most active sporting organisations in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

For the men and women in Bagga, it is non-stop action for the better part of the year, as softball cricket, and then football and netball, which run concurrently, consume the population of the Central Leeward town.

Added to the mix, is the enthusiasm and persona of Physical Education teacher Chester Morgan, who has filliped interest and ultimately silverware and attention to track and field, especially in the Central Leeward area.

Therefore, the focus of attention on the rise in performance of teams from that geographical location is not only to laud the efforts and highlight the achievements, but dig deeper and seek the formula for such successes.

Beyond the mere visible energies, efforts and programmes, are there hidden factors which are contributing to this rise?

Is there a genetic makeup of the present generation of sportsmen and women from those parts of the island which is triggering off that sort of progress?

But are there other untold psychological and socialization phenomena that affect the performances positively? Or is it that success simply breeds success?

Is it that the people of these regions consciously and definitively stake a claim for national recognition through sports?

Are the Leeward communities slowly carving out a niche as the sporting capitals?

If these trends are to continue, then will other communities seek to upstage Leeward outfits?

And, will this have an impact in the allocation of personnel and other sporting resources?

Maybe there is nothing magical, just a turn in the wheel of achievements for the people of Leeward.