Not unexpectedly, 16-year-old Aaliyah Lewis, a magnificent young dancer who many believe is destined for superstardom, won the 14th edition of Talent Expression 2014 Final.
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Anil’s Ministry deserves some praise
The Ministry of Sport and Anil Roberts, the Minister of Sport, are both in no win situations. It doesn’t matter which government is in power.
Invariably the good things that are done or taking place very rarely receive the same prominence as the negative stuff. That there are good things happening isn’t what most people want to hear.
That’s just the nature of things and human beings.
On Sunday, I attended the opening ceremony of an International badminton training camp—collaboration between the T&T Badminton Association, Cuba and the Ministry of Sport.
The function was held at the Central Regional Indoor Sport Arena, Chaguanas. The founder of the programme is Cuban Solange Guzman Perez. Guzman is now based here and is a regional and Continental medallist.
That she was able to get the Cuban national team and coach to come for a training camp that will expose over 50 local players of varying ages to planning and periodisation, sport nutrition, massage therapy among other things is a powerful display that sport is indeed a universal language that can unite people like no other human endeavour.
The objective of the camp is to improve the level of coaching in T&T and contribute to the development of the senior and junior national teams. In addition, local players will enjoy the opportunity to train with top Cuban players.
Cuba is led by Pan American champion Osleni Guerrero.
Badminton president Derwin Renales and members of his executive must be congratulated for their vision and open-mindedness.
The presence of the Cuban Ambassador Senor Guillermo Vazquez and the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Sport Ashwin Creed would have sent an important message to the community.
The number of young players along with a number of parents and coaches certainly augurs well for the future.
The last time the sport was represented at an Olympic Games would have been in 1996 when Dr Debra O’ Connor created local badminton history.
It is very clear that the sport is taking the necessary steps to chart a bright future and in the process qualify athletes for the Olympic Games.
One would have to be extremely churlish and cynical to find fault with the historic collaboration between Cuba and T&T badminton.
That it was at the same time as the Panorama semi-finals made the turn out even more commendable.
The car park was full as it wasn’t only badminton making use of the facility but also archery.
The tendency in T&T is for most of the media and public attention to focus on the popular sports such as football and cricket, track and field, swimming and cycling.
But for those who are paying attention, some of the so called small sports are making significant progress in very important areas such as coaching development and growing their participation base.
Much of the progress is happening below the radar but it’s safe to say that in time to come the benefits of these efforts will come to the public and media consciousness.
In this respect the Ministry of Sport must be encouraged to stay the course as Rome wasn’t built in a day.
Brian Lewis is the
President of the Olympic Committee www.ttoc.org. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the TTOC.