Edwards defends decision to withdraw vice presidency nomination

Former national striker, Derrick “Pretty Boy” Edwards. (File photo)
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By Neto Baptiste

Former national striker Derrick “Pretty Boy” Edwards has defended his decision to withdraw his nomination for the post of vice president during the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association’s (ABFA) electoral congress held on Monday night.

Edwards was however forced to defend his decision after the former president of the Lion Hill FC, Devon Joseph, suggested that his motives for running in the first place were not sincere and that he has ill-gotten feelings against Gonsalves.

“At the end of the day, the kind of life that I live, I can’t hate people and I have to accept the process and we have to move on, but when you align my name with hatred for someone there is where you cross the line. He has mentioned my name a lot of times on the radio and I didn’t take it for anything because I know it’s sports we are dealing with and you will get those things. But when it comes to aligning my name with hating Batow, then you cross the line. Batow and I have differing views and different ideas. I chose not to continue in the process because they have different ideas and programmes than what we had, so that’s the reason I withdrew myself from the process,” he said.

Edwards was one of two candidates — the other being former national defender Ivor “Ninja” Luke — who opted to pull out of the race following the defeat of presidential candidate Barbara Coates on whose slate they had appeared. Coates lost to incumbent Everton “Batow” Gonsalves by a 32-28 margin.

The former national coach said he will channel his energies elsewhere.

“It’s family time now and I have a young son who is into tennis, so I will just focus my energy on my son. Let me congratulate all the teams that supported Barbara Coates and myself. [I] thank them for the support but at the end of the day Batow came out on top so I just want to congratulate him and just hope that football will be the winner in this whole thing,” Edwards said. 

Joseph, who attended Monday night’s meeting as a representative of the Guydadli FC, opined that the move by Edwards and Luke was in poor taste and further suggested they were never really interested in assisting to develop the game.

“I think what Pretty Boy and Ivor did last night is an insult to Mrs Coates and the other members on the team, because in none of the meetings they had [with clubs] did they express that they were going to do that. I am saying that it just shows they don’t love football and they wanted to get rid of Batow, and that is just how I see it,” he said.

Gonsalves and his full slate of candidates were elected during the body’s electoral congress on Monday.  

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