Last update: 04-Dec-2013 10:40 pm
Wednesday, December 04, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Indians see Roberts vision for sport as world class
Trinidad and Tobago’s direction in field of sport has totally impressed two Indian sports officials who recently visited the country.
Top sports journalist Ravi Chaturvedi and top Delhi sports facilities contractor Vishish Ambati are both very impressed with the way the minister of Sport, the Hon Anil Roberts is handling sports in what they call tiny T&T.
Chaturvedi who has written extensively about Caribbean affairs in different Indian journals said he was very surprised to see the development within the sporting sector in this country.
“When I came to T&T, I had my eye out for what was happening around sport in this tiny country. I was amazed by the fact that at nights there were so many different sporting activities going on. You know coming into this country we were warned that you need to be careful and don’t wonder away from your accommodation at nights.
“However, I could not help but venture out because there were so many beautifully lit grounds all around the place and what was important was the fact that people were actually using it. I went around to see some soft-ball cricket and whilst there I had the opportunity to speak to a number of people.
“They were really happy with what the fact that they could have gotten the opportunity to come out and have something meaningful to do. They were in high praise of the Minister of Sport, saying that he has a passion for the field the Prime Minister put him in and this is why sports was developing.
“While across there, I noticed that Roberts was opening up more and more sports facilities and I said to myself that it was unbelieveable for such a small country to have all these facilities. This vision by the minister of sport is world class and he seems to be exposed to what is out there in the developed countries and this is why you are seeing things happening.
“I noticed that there was an elite athlete programme and during my travels across third world counties this is unheard of. The ministry of sport is not divorced from the athletes and this is why development is raging. They seem to buy into the philosophy of the ministry of sport and this synergy will only bring success to T&T. In my humble view, while T&T is regarded as a developing country, I think sport has led the way and for this I tip my hat to your minister of sport.”
Ambati said he took an interest in the design of the sporting facilities in the country: “Given my background in the construction industry I took an interest in the design of the facilities and I was very impressed. The little grounds in the villages is what really caught my eyes. They seemed to be well thought out and I can tell you one thing, you are sure to get top athletes coming through the system because they are being provided with good facilitates from young.
“I know of some of the workings of your SPORTT and they are doing a wonderful job. I was working on a project and contacted them for some guidance. Someone there told me that when the minister comes by everyone must be working, or else it’s another story. One guy told me the man is obsessed with work and given a chance he would have everyone in the country playing sport.
“This quality of the minister is great and I am sure that the result of his hard work will be there for all to see many years to come. I saw some of the programmes being developed by the ministry and SPORTT and they are fantastic. A lot of people are now being involved in the sports and coming from India, I know the value of mass participation.”
Ambati had one advice for Roberts saying: “While he has taken an interest in getting facilties up to a good standard and also adding new facilities, he must remember that maintenence is the key to having best use of them and he needs to keep the focus for a long time, in order to get the desired results.
“We in India have a many sporting facilitates that are first world and it would probably do your minister good, to come across with a delegation, so that he can improve on his delivery even more.”
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