Start thinking ahead
Several developments over the last few weeks and months, have made it necessary for St Vincent and the Grenadines to become more proactive, by thinking ahead.
The need for this type of proactivity has become mandatory, as the ever changing face of operations demands this.
Like other aspects, sports must not be exempted and too, must fall in line.
There is no doubt that we are beaten to the tape, because over the years we have failed to see beyond our big toes, as it were.
Here we are, constructing the Diamond Track Facility, which is part of the long-awaited National Stadium project. We therefore have to think ahead, not about simply the fanfare of its completion, but sustaining it.
As it is, we may have missed the boat by not including the installation of lights at that facility, so we have to be doing the corrective processes down the road, which in turn would be at a higher cost.
It must be a major slip-up and a faux pas, that such thought was not put in place to have the facility fitted with lights, as having sporting activities, in this case track and field and football, at evenings into the night, is the order of the day.
It is this column’s hope that while the authorities have missed the trick with the lighting, surely, a proper maintenance plan has to be instituted from the get go.
This is in retrospect of what was and is the case of the Arnos Vale Playing Field. After digging into the national purse ahead of the 2007 hosting of Cricket World Cup in the Caribbean, that venue has been under utilised and there is need for some extensive maintenance.
Today, that Arnos Vale venue is a shadow of what it was a decade ago, as it pertains to its upkeep.
Sadly, that venue cannot be described in the same glowing terms as was the case 20 years ago, as we have not done what we ought to.
Similarly, we have not gone ahead and install lights at the venue. Neither have we pursued with any real sense of purpose, the erection of the replay screens and the likes, which are must for the hosting of One Day Internationals and Twenty/20 Internationals.
Again, even though we were forewarned that these infrastructure are prerequisites.
But, as we cannot forever cry over spilt milk and lost opportunities, we can surely endeavour not to make the same errors and construct the same pitfalls.
So, when last Wednesday, it was announced that Sandals Resorts is in line to take over the Buccament Bay Resorts, we have to begin to position ourselves in the event that it comes to fruition.
Reason being, Sandals is the major sponsor of West Indies cricket teams, from the Under-15 level to seniors, both males and females.
The deal which was cut in 2018, shows that the visiting touring teams are normally hosted at venues in which Sandals is operational. And, although the initial deal between Cricket West Indies and Sandals was arranged from 2018 to 2020, all indications are that this would be renewed.
This means that St Vincent and the Grenadines has to put things in place for this prospective continuation, as we have to keep with the times and set ourselves up, and not be left out of the loop.
We have seen what others in the region are doing to be always first choice. The competitive market for sports has and will forever be in favour of those who are ahead of the game; the ones who are proactive and are paying attention to the trends.
St Vincent and the Grenadines should not be caught with its pants down anymore, or worse, with it right off.
Our present state where there is a lack of forward thinking must not remain as part of our stock, but should be addressed as priority, not only for sports, but for national development.