Athlete’s Removal From Carifta Team Causes Uproar

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A row has erupted between the Antigua & Barbuda Athletics Association (ABAA) and one of the country’s top coaches following a decision to drop one of his athletes from the national team earmarked to compete at next weekend’s Carifta Games in Curacao.
Reports are that 100 and 200 metres specialist, Kaden Joseph, who qualified for the event during the 2017 Coca Cola Interschools Championships last month, was removed, this week, from the list of 19 athletes originally named for the annual games.
His removal hinges on reports that a knee injury has affected his training and could possibly have a negative impact on his health and performance at the Carifta meet.
Admitting that Joseph was nursing a knee injury, his coach, Evans Jones, however sought to debunk claims that the injury will affect his athlete’s performance adding that he has in fact, been given clearance by noted sports physician, Dr Philmore Benjamin.
“He prescribed that he did hydrotherapy which is simple — training in the beach or training in a pool whereas you’re taking the weight off the knee from the hard surface because we know YASCO is like the asphalt we drive on daily, so we did that,” he said.
“We rested for four days; there was a meeting that was held with Keston Daley, the physiotherapist for the team and the president Everton Cornelius. However, based on the training that was done over the weekend, I spoke to Dr Benjamin and I tested Kaden on Tuesday and he did a full workout which was a short speed endurance,” he added.
Jones, a former national athlete, described the move as “total disrespect” given that the athlete’s time of 21:48 in the 200 metres at the interschools’ event, would have qualified him for World Youth this year.
“They say the athletes must be checked and given the okay by the physiotherapist, but to my recollection in sports, these things are done by a physician and not only a physician but the physician who went to Rio Olympics last year, and who gave the information on Miguel Francis when he was injured,” the coach said.
“I think that this is total disrespect and it’s personal coming from the president because of the situation where the election was held last month, but should have been held since 2016 where I, Dr Benjamin and five other clubs did not participate,” he added.
But the ABAA president has denied the assertions, suggesting that efforts to have the athlete take tests at their expense proved futile.
“I made this pellucid that there is no way I am going to jeopardise the career of a 16-year-old athlete just for one meet. On Friday, I said, have the ultrasound done and all consultation concerning the athlete done through my physiotherapist, so that he can relay whatever their decision is, their findings and whatever decisions they make as a group. Nothing has been done to date,” Cornelius said.
“Neither coach, parents, doctor, physiotherapist or anyone [got back to us]. Besides that, I am consulting with my physiotherapist to find out what is going on with this athlete and no one thinks it’s necessary to at least say to us that ‘we’re doing this and we will get on to you’,” the president added.
Jamille Nelson and Kesswin Anthony will be the coaches for Carifta team and Jo-Ann Small will be the female official.
Keston Daley will travel as the physiotherapist, while the president, Cornelius, and General Secretary of the ABAA, Leslie Williams will be attending the Annual Carifta Games Congress in Curacao.

Reports are that 100 and 200 metres specialist, Kaden Joseph, who qualified for the event during the 2017 Coca Cola Inter Schools Championships last month, was removed, this week, from the list of 19 athletes.

 

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