KINGSTON, Jamaica — The Jamaica Observer has been informed that chairman of Caymanas Track Limited (CTL), the promoters of horse racing in the island, Joseph ‘Big Joe’ Matalon has tendered his resignation to Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Finance, Planning and the Public Service Horace Dall ...more »
ON Saturday, February 23, 2013, I attended the Gibson Relays, and as per usual, our youngsters brought their "A" game and spectators were treated to stellar performances.
However, I was very alarmed to see athletes from a few primary schools running barefoot. One of these schools even finished second in one of the relays. Can you imagine if that team was properly equipped? This is not the first time that I have observed this. With Jamaica now being the sprint capital of the world, this cannot be allowed to continue.
I am appealing to the Institute of Sports (Insports) and the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) to conduct an audit of the number of athletes at the primary level who are in need of this vital footwear, and mobilise the private sector to provide sponsorship. Given the intimate relationship between Puma and Jamaica's athletics fraternity, that's a good place to start.
Pelé and Maradona could not have realised their dreams of becoming the world's best footballers without being equipped with football boots; Serena Williams and Roger Federer could not have dominated the sport of tennis without tennis racquets; the late Dany Wilson (Jamaican) could not have realised his dream of becoming a top-ranked indoor and beach volleyball player, and playing professional volleyball overseas without the necessary playing gear; and of course, the incomparable Usain St Leo Bolt could not have become the world's fastest human, and ultimately a legend, without the use of that critical resource - running spikes.
Let's start with athletics and roll out an assistance programme on a phased basis for other sports. Insports could collaborate with the respective national sport federations on this venture.
Against this background, I am appealing to philanthropic Jamaicans - the private sector and individuals who can afford to donate running spikes to these athletes, to do so.
Let's equip our youngsters with the necessary tools so that they can realise their fullest potentials. We owe it to them.
Wayne O Robertson is immediate past president of the Jamaica Volleyball Association (JaVA)
BOLT... running spikes
critical to success
MARADONA and PELE... proper football boots important
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