Sport

Morgan will not seek re-election as Tennis Jamaica president

BY GERALD REID
Observer writer

Saturday, April 20, 2019

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ASWAD Morgan, president of Tennis Jamaica (TJ), has decided to not to seek re-election as president of the association at its upcoming elections to be held on Tuesday, April 30, 2019.

“After careful consideration, I have decided not to run for the presidency, or any other office of Tennis Jamaica in the upcoming elections on April 30, 2019,” Morgan said in a statement released on April 15.

He added: “While I received tremendous support from members, I do not believe that another divisive election would be good for tennis at this time. The wounds of the 2016 elections have just begun to heal, and a hotly contested election would risk deepening the divide that exists within the tennis community.”

Morgan explained that the divide has had significant impact — with many individuals and sponsors withholding their support, while participation in tournaments dwindled, as a result of the division of players, parents and coaches.

“Coming out of the 2016 elections, one of the primary goals of the board was to create unity and a common vision among stakeholders,” he said.

According to Morgan, upon assuming the role of acting president in December 2017, it was clear that medium to long-term strategies would be required to ensure sustainable development of tennis talent in Jamaica, so as to elevate the sport to a world class level.

With this vision in mind, the current board achieved the following:

– Creation of a feasible 10-year strategic plan;

– The hosting of an International Tennis Federation (ITF) Level One Coaching course in October 2018;

– ITF certification of five local coaches, two of whom are expected to benefit from advanced coaching in Valencia, Spain 2019;

– Formation of Strategic partnerships to fund the salary of a national tennis director.

– Increased Fund-raising in 2018 over prior years (2016-2017);

– Launch of Tennis Jamaica “Future Stars” Under-10 Tennis Tournament Series in April 2019, which will comprise three tournaments on April 13, June 15, and October 12, 2019;

– Advanced negotiations for the development of a world-class national tennis centre, accommodating eight tennis courts, with lighting and seating for 2,500 spectators.

He said Jamaica's tennis has a rich history and, with the best athletes in the world, significant untapped potential. In addition, the location and climate make Jamaica an ideal destination for training and hosting tournaments.

“I would like to thank the directors of the Tennis Jamaica Board who served during my term in office, members of our hard-working and dedicated administrative team, members of Tennis Jamaica, the Jamaica Olympic Association, and the Sports Development Foundation; and many thanks also to our sponsors whom have contributed to the sport,” he added.

“I trust that the new leadership of Tennis Jamaica will build on these achievements, execute the strategic vision, and further unite the tennis community and create the opportunity to place Jamaica's tennis where it belongs — on top of the world stage,” Morgan concluded.


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