By Neto Baptiste
Popular figure within the sporting community, and founder of the Shipwreck Youth Development Football League, Stanfield “Shipwreck” Joseph, is urging administrators and others charged with moving sports forward here in Antigua and Barbuda to become more proactive.
Speaking on the Cool & Smooth Good Morning Jojo Sports Show after accepting his Lifetime Achievement Award, Joseph said players are often left to suffer the consequences or the aftermath of administrators waiting or blaming others when simple stumbling blocks cross their paths.
“I guess some more hard work, self-discipline because somebody would argue and say they don’t have this, or they don’t have that, or they don’t have a ball, and the field is not marked, but I don’t wait on somebody to do it. I do it and then I can criticise after, but it must happen; the kids can’t get left out, everything is for them,” he said.
Joseph, who has been heralded for his contributions to sports and community, was recognised on a national scale back in 2003 after he was awarded the Most Precious Order of Princely Heritage (OH).
The sports lover has worked with a number of international cricket and football teams that have passed through or stayed in Antigua in the past.
Heralding the Shipwreck Youth Development Football League as one of his greatest achievements, Joseph explained how the idea was born.
“Actually it came out of the same helping them, and after, we had a camp up Police Grounds, and Sydney Christian’s son and I, after the camp, we decided to have an ‘all stars’ team. He asked what we were going to name the team and I said “International,” but Sydney Christian’s son said, “No, it has to be Shipwreck International.” We were supposed to move around and play against some teams, but we didn’t get to do that. We had so many teams that wanted to come and play, so we just formed the league,” he said. Joseph was turned down for a knighthood during last November’s Independence celebrations. The application was made on Joseph’s behalf by another community stalwart and close friend, Anthony Stuart.