By Neto Baptiste
President of the Antigua and Barbuda Tennis Association (ABTA), Cordell Williams Sr, wants to take a “backseat” role within the organisation and has said he is willing to step aside should a suitable and qualified individual expressed interest in the post.
The former player and coach made the disclosure while speaking on the Good Morning Jojo Sports Show, stating that too many individuals put on a show and once elected, fail to live up to their responsibilities as a leader.
“I would like to take a backseat as I speak to you and you could speak to the treasurer or secretary and they would tell you that I wanted the elections to come since last year so that I could take a break, because running an association takes a lot out of you. Even when you have elections and you have new faces, new people somehow get elected, but they are not functioning. So it is a lot of pressure to even run an association, and then when people do get in and realise the kind of work and sacrifice and there is no thank you or reward, then they just back off,” he said.
Elections are constitutionally due this year for the tennis association and Williams is hoping they could he held before the end of the year.
Last elected in 2016, Williams reminded any aspiring president of the level of work and dedication required to effectively lead the association.
“When I had stepped down in 2001 and a new executive took over and they realised they had to find this money to pay, they just left it. The association was suspended until 2007 and then we got back in and cleared up that debt, so whosever takes over the association is going to have a lot of work. The first agenda on your plate is to find $16,000 every year to pay the ITF,” he said. Williams said the ABTA is not eyeing a return to competitive tennis before 2021 despite a recent call by the country’s sports minister Daryll Matthew that the government is now moving towards reopening competitive sports.