By Neto Baptiste
Team Antigua Pairs – Jojo Nunes and Travis Weste – have been commended by former national and West Indies players, Sir Vivian Richards and Sir Richie Richardson, following their successful journey from La Gomera to Antigua in the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge.
The duo arrived in Antigua last Thursday following 47 days, six hours and 57 minutes at sea, becoming the first Antiguan pair to make the journey.
Sir Viv, considered one of the greatest batsman to play the game of cricket and one of two living National Heroes in Antigua, said Nunes and Weste are true patriots for having physically put themselves on the line for their country.
“When you see achievements like this and you see a lot of people around the place at times who talk up a lot of stuff about I’ve done this or done that and get a lot of photo opps and all that sort of stuff, this is the real thing, the stuff that real men and women are made of and as an Antiguan and Barbudan, I am just tremendously proud of their achievements and so I just take my hat off to them.
“These are moments that make you feel proud to know that you’re an Antiguan and Barbudan,” he said.
The rowers’ 3000-mile journey across the Atlantic began on December 12 last year, landing on Antiguan soil to the warm welcome and loud cheers of family, friends and well-wishers.
Sir Richie, one of four knighted former cricketers here, revealed that he is familiar with one of the two young men, adding that the feat is something that should make anyone feel proud to be an Antiguan.
“It’s always great when we have nationals go out there and represent us and do so well. One of the rowers is actually my neighbour, Jojo Nunes is my neighbour so I feel very proud. I know his father very well, his mother worked with me and we are very close so I feel very proud,” he said.
“It’s a pity that it’s this time so people could not come out because I am sure the entire island would have been out there to welcome them but one of the most beautiful things about it is that when you look at those two guys in terms of one of them dancing all along and Jojo just there as cool as ever, as if it was a piece of cake for them,” the iconic player added.
Nunes and Weste were greeted by previous entrants Team Antigua Island Girls, Kevinia Francis, Elvira Bell, Samara Emmanuel and Christal Clashing.