By Neto Baptiste
Efforts to replace the roofing at the JSC basketball complex has been thwarted by Covid-19.
This was the word from General Secretary of the Antigua and Barbuda Basketball Association (ABBA), Jennell Willette, who said that although funding remains a major issue, the body was close to finalising arrangements with both private partners and the government to have the roofing replaced when the country went into lockdown in 2020.
“Again, funding is one of our primary issues. We did receive quotation for materials and labour but it’s just a matter of ensuring we secure the funds to make it happen. We have been in dialog with the government but right when we were on the ball to get it done, Covid happened. It is not a situation we have put on the backburner, we are still very much trying to get it done and especially with no basketball happening at the facility,” she said.
Reports had surfaced last year that the roof at the association’s main facility had developed several leaks over time and that it may have also delayed the start of some games in the association’s top tier.
Willette said that some work has been carried out on the affected areas of the roof and that it should not hamper the planned restart of the sport.
“It’s not that bad. There are specific areas but every time we look at one area and you address that area, another heavy downpour identifies another spot so it’s just a case where we have to wait sometimes until rain comes to identify the areas where the leakage happens. It doesn’t need to be fixed before basketball can play because even before Covid we did do a little work to it which kind of alleviated the situation just a little bit but it still will require some major work,” she said.
Competitive basketball is set to restart during the last quarter of the year with what Willette is calling a basketball jamboree.