By Carlena Knight
The Interschools Track and Field competition will be held this weekend.
Director of Sports Heather Samuel-Daley made the revelation on Wednesday during an appearance on the Good Morning JoJo Sports show.
The competition, which has not been staged since 2017, will take place on Friday and Saturday at YASCO sports complex, starting at 2 pm on both days.
According to Daley, the decision was made following meetings with representatives from the various secondary schools across the island.
“It was determined that it is now or never and so, this weekend, Friday and Saturday, will be the Interschools Championships. I was informed by most of the schools that if it doesn’t happen after this weekend, the door will be closed on whether or not we would have it this year, so we had to really push and we are pushing to ensure that the event happens,” Daley said.
She expects that around 12 or 13 secondary schools, both public and private, will be competing.
The former sprinter further clarified why it is important for this event to be held before the end of this year.
“We have not had an Interschools Track and Field since 2017. It means that an entire generation of athletes would have missed the opportunity to participate in the event. Many have already graduated and some are graduating this year and it is vitally important that we give them at least one last chance at exposure,” Daley explained.
“We have had Interschools Basketball, netball, football and it is incumbent on us now with a certified track to try and give these athletes who have trained even during the pandemic the opportunity to participate in one of the premier events we have in Antigua in terms of the Ministry of Sports,” she added.
The Ministry of Sports will cover the full costs of the event.
Preparations are now underway, according to Daley, especially where seating is concerned.
She did, however, encourage patrons to bring along a chair if possible.
Athletes will compete in the Under-15, Under-17 and Under-20 categories.