By Neto Baptiste
More competition and support could help to improve the chances of young Antiguan athletes qualifying for major international games.
This is the belief of national sprinter and two-time Olympian, Cejhae Greene, who said that being able to put your skills and talent on display while facing meaningful competition could help athletes develop the killer instinct needed to compete on the international scene.
“That is one of the things I see Jamaica do a lot, and I use Jamaica because they are in the Caribbean and from a track & field point of view, they are one of the giants in the Caribbean if not the biggest giant in the Caribbean and they have a lot of competitions. They give their athletes a fair chance to go out and compete,” he said.
So far as the support is concerned, Greene clarified that not all support has to be financial but that support in other areas are just as important.
“Not only having the support from a professional standpoint and for athletes outside but for athletes at home to have some sort of support and when I say support it doesn’t always mean financial support. Financial support helps alike but if you’re not going to provide financially, just making sure that their physiotherapy is taken care of or the sports facilities are taken care of so they would have the pieces around them for them to succeed,” he said.
Greene is hoping that with the newly approved Mondo surface at the YASCO Sports Complex things could get back to normal with the hosting of critical meets like the annual inter-schools competition.
“Now we finally have a track, from track & field perspective we can actually host competitions and for me, that was one of the biggest things in terms of not having kids come through the inter-schools system because I am pretty sure you can agree that most of our track & field talent came through the school system. I came through the school system, Tahir Walsh came through the school system, Joella Lloyd came through the school system so having inter-school and having school sports is pivotal,” the athlete said.
The surface at YASCO recently receive class two certification by World Athletics.