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By Neto Baptiste

The Antigua and Barbuda Netball Association (ABNA) is positioned to host its national championships should the government give the all-clear for the resumption of competitive sports in the near or distant future.

This is according to head of the organisation and former national player, Karen Joseph, who said that although there has been no on-court action for the year, players and teams have managed to remain in relatively good shape since the coronavirus pandemic shut down sports worldwide.

“We are ready and especially for the female aspect. The under-16s have not been training and I know because of this [Covid-19] we have to be very careful, but the senior girls are more responsible. What Carl Casey does is take shifts in terms of the gym-training where you would have four at a time, and he would be there with them and making sure they are doing the things that are right; so if we call a tournament now, around say November or December, I know my girls would give 110 percent,” she said.

Joseph, who was unopposed in her bid to take the reins of the organisation when she first took office in 2017, showered praises on her executive team and the entire netball fraternity for the level of interest in involvement she has seen throughout the pandemic.

“Look, I have to big-up my executive members, because sometimes it is not easy to work with friends and people that you care about, but when you have that relationship it makes a lot of difference and I have that with the executive. They are an executive I can depend on, I can say girls we need to get this done and they are there,” she said.

“They too want the same things that I want, and it is a good feeling to work with people like that, and so I must big them up tremendously. I also want to big-up the netball fraternity on a whole. The players are involved, they are ready to play and they are showing interest in a lot of the different aspects of  netball outside of the playing. They want to learn to umpire, the want to learn the rules, because most of the national players are going to umpiring [webinar] as well, because when you know the rules you know how to play the game,” the former number-two world-ranked goal shooter said. The association, Joseph said, has invested in the education of its players and officials through a series of webinars.

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