By Neto Baptiste
Veteran netball player, Yvonne Williams Willis, said she took great pride in representing Antigua and Barbuda and believes that players today, do not quite grasp the importance and responsibility that comes along with wearing national colors.
Speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, Willis said she was always driven to be the best whenever she stepped onto the netball court and that the same energy and attitude stuck with her in the other aspects of life.
“It was wonderful, it was great going there to represent my country and I don’t think that young people today have the same vibes that we had in wanting to represent your country and feel good, doing well and developing your own personal self and so you have that achievement that carries your right through your life that you want to achieve things as well. They don’t have that today and they are just like they are into it because of their parents or whatever but we knew we had to send ourselves there, our parents couldn’t send us and so we worked hard to be the top in the world,” she said.
Willis, who was the number two ranked goal-shoot behind Trinidad’s Jean Pierre at the 1979 World Championships in Trinidad, said the game has changed significantly from when she played but that she would have relished the opportunity to compete against some of the game’s modern players.
“When I watch the world tournaments now they are not playing like us. We use to be swift and fast, dodging and shifting and getting into position. Everybody now just standing up and waiting on a lob and I said wow, if they had that now or in our time, we would be there, I would be there and that would even make you prouder to know that you were in another world class netball tournament where you go to be the best and put out yourself to be the best,” she said. Willis was a dominant goal shoot in regional and international netball in the late 70s and early 80s.