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Why bother to have this bogus Sports Awards?

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24.APR.09

Editor: Permit me the space in your weekly publication to briefly express my views and the views of many, if not the majority of Vincentians, about the just concluded 2008 National Sports Awards put on by the National Sports Council behind the Arnos Vale Playing field on the Great Head beach.{{more}}

Firstly, the very location chosen to host this supposedly prestigious show to honour our great sportsmen & women for a good year’s work was certainly not the work of a genius, as I am now left to wonder if the next place it might be held will be in the sea, since they seem to be getting closer each year.

Secondly, the very tardiness in having the awards show and the date on which it was held, with the Prime Minister, the deputy and even the acting Prime Minister and Minister of Sport all absent, a little more and we would have been into the Carnival season. No wonder Danielle Veira found it fitting to release her first track for Vincy mas at this bogus sports awards show.

And lastly, the results revealed on the night of this event were definitely not popular with the majority of sport-loving Vincentians. For a moment, I was led to believe that it was the Squash Association having their own awards show and not a show for all the national associations in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Just to cite one of the many mistakes in the judges’ results on that night was their decision to reward James Bentick as Sportsman of the Year 2008, over Pamenos Ballantyne who really had a great come back year in 2008, and as they say, Pamenos proved his critics wrong. James’ greatest achievement for the year would have been a victory in some Over 40 regional squash tournament, while Pamenos won all his local races, won races at the OECS & Caricom level and even came back to run the fastest time recorded in a couple of years in the Barbados International Marathon, beating the more favored Kenyans and a large field of athletes from all over the globe in the 26.2 miles event. What a cheat! Or is it the highest level of bias and spitefulness? Or maybe one of the judges’ criteria was to have a minister’s wife being at the leadership of the sport? Or as I found more comfort in believing, it was just a bogus Sports Awards Show brought live on radio & television as camera tricks to play on the emotions of Vincentians. Whatever it was, it is very disheartening and discouraging to our National Associations, athletes, coaches and administrators of sports in general to know that their efforts are not being taken seriously, much less to be adjudged fairly.

Concerning this National Sports Awards Show for 2008 and the way things are taken for granted by the people in charge in this country, sport-loving Vincentians were certainly not impressed, and the National Sports Council must not let an event like this branded under its organization ever occur again.

Sport-loving Vincentian

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