Queen’s Baton Lands For ‘Relay With A Difference’

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Antigua & Barbuda’s leg of this year’s Queen’s Baton Relay will take a different format from previous instalments.
This is according to chief organiser of the relay carded for Sunday and Monday, Daryll Matthew, who said the usual mode of just relaying the baton to various points of the island via athletes and dignitaries has become a bit mundane.
“So rather than it being a relay of persons traveling around the island, it’s going to be a relay of small events and so it’s starts at Government House on Sunday morning with the official opening and the official passing of the baton to the Governor General [Sir Rodney Williams] who is the Queen’s representative and members of the government,” he said.
“The delegation will them move to the Botanical Gardens because while Prince Harry was in Antigua last year, he unveiled a plaque at the Botanical Gardens for a Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy project where they are doing some work with the Botanical Gardens and so they have asked that it be included in the itinerary,” he added.
The baton, Matthew added, will visit a number of key sporting facilities within St John’s before moving to the outskirts.
“Photos will be taken with our athletes at Devil’s Bridge, our fencers and I think, our boxers — if you can imagine a photo of two fencers on the bridge itself in their on-guard position. We really want to highlight things Antiguan and so when that overall compilation of photos and videos are put together, we are not going to be just another country with athletes standing and holding the baton,” he said.
“We are going to show unique Antigua & Barbuda images like the Lookout up at Shirley Heights, Devil’s Bridge, Betty’s Hope; that’s the format the baton relay is going to take this year,” the basketball association head added.
The baton, which is slated to arrive in Antigua at 10 am Saturday, will also visit a number of historic sites in an effort to promote the country and its tourist attractions.
“We will leave from there [Botanical Gardens] to the National Tennis Center, to YASCO, to YMCA, to JSC, and this is where we will be a little bit different after we leave JSC. The baton will travel with the official baton bearers to the different sporting events so we will go to the Athletic Club where they should be having a swimming event on Sunday,” Matthew said.
“We leave from the Athletic Club and the caravan will travel by bus to the AUA, so you can see the point I am making where we are not going to be running along the road but rather, the baton is being taken to specific areas where the different sporting associations will congregate and take photographs and all the other niceties,” he added.
The relay will continue on Monday when the baton travels to Barbuda for a series of events on the sister isle.

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