The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Rugby Union partnered with the Cicada Foundation on Saturday 21st April 2018 to deliver a rugby impact event in the community of Rose Place (Bottom Town), to 16 boys and girls. The children learned how to play rugby using a number of fun activities, ending with some tag rugby.
The Cicada Foundation, founded by Eniye Kagbala and JD, is working in various communities throughout St. Vincent and the Grenadines, using creativity, sports and culture to enhance children’s lives.
They reach out to communities and try to find representatives in each area to help. Keneisha Gordon, a resident and community rep in Rose Place, teaches children in her community in her spare time and helps organise such events.
The St. Vincent and the Grenadines Rugby Union extends special thanks to Keneisha, Eniye, JD and all the GIR coaches for putting on such a fun event for the children, they really did enjoy the activities and we might have found some future players.
CASTRIES, SAINT LUCIA – Saint Lucia’s international high jumper Levern Spencer returned home last Thursday April 19, 2018 to a heroine’s welcome, after creating history by becoming the first Saint Lucian to win a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games.
The 33-year-old was met by her family, government dignitaries, and sporting officials, when she arrived at the Hewanorra International Airport.
Among the government officials in attendance were Acting Prime Minister Stephenson King, Minister of Sports Lennard Montoute, and Minister for Local Government and Culture Fortuna Belrose, who is also the President of the Saint Lucia Olympic Committee.
Following a short welcome ceremony at the Hewanorra International Airport, a motorcade accompanied Spencer back to Castries, where a celebration ceremony was held in the Derek Walcott Square.
During her remarks, Belrose said Levern had made Saint Lucia proud and had set the island apart from all other countries formerly ruled by Britain.
“For our country, at this time, you have emphasized the attributes and values we need to maintain and inculcate for sustainable success for our people. You have also through this brought our reality as a people and nation into sharp focus,” Belrose said.
Levern is the only athlete in the Caribbean to win gold at the Central American and Caribbean Games, Pan American Games, and Commonwealth Games, respectively.
Not even Usain Bolt has done that, as he did not compete in neither the Pan Am or Commonwealth Games, making Levern Spencer’s feat unique in the Caribbean for both men and women athletes.
Acting Prime Minister Stephenson King, said the government was proud of, and stands behind Spencer in providing more support as she continues to pursue her sporting career.
King said Levern continues to be an icon who young Saint Lucians should look up to for inspiration and motivation.
Spencer said she started this sporting season very apprehensive after being forced out of competition due to injury last year. She said this homecoming felt extra special for her.
“I am glad that one of my big sporting dreams have now been realised in that after two previous bronze medals in 2010 and 2014, I brought home a Commonwealth gold medal, something I will forever cherish,” Spencer said.
Spencer dedicated her victory to Saint Lucia, saying “I trust that it was a proud moment for all St Lucians as it was for me.”
According to Spencer said. “Because this is all that I have sought to do for my professional career, that is to place St Lucia on top of the world and to show that, despite our size, we can soar to great heights.”
Spencer said she hopes that her achievements will inspire younger Saint Lucians to aim high and perhaps capture the elusive Olympic gold medal.
Levern Spencer won the gold medal in the women’s high jump at rhe Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia after clearing the bar with a season’s best jump of 1.95 metres.
CASTRIES, SAINT LUCIA – The Government of Saint Lucia is determined to take sports to a whole new level with the establishment of a Centre of Excellence for Sports, earmarked for the September 2018 school year.
The Gros Islet Secondary School will be the home for the Centre of Excellence for Sports, which is expected to start with select programmes that will be increased over the next three years.
Young people, according to the Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, will be given every opportunity to use their talents to excel outside of and within traditional academic pursuits.
“If we accept, as my administration does, that sport is a critical vehicle for building the fabric of our nation, then we must equally accept that this medium must be utilized in a more strategic and structured manner,” the Prime Minister said. “Nowhere is this lack of cohesion more evident than in our sports infrastructure.”
The Prime Minister also disclosed the government’s intention to undertake a comprehensive review of the island’s 160 plus sports facilities. The results of the review will be used to formulate an action plan which, hopefully, over the next ten years, will produce a more focused approach to the development, upgrade, rationalization and management of sports facilities.
“This year, our efforts will focus on transforming the Soufriere Mini Stadium into a national facility that will accommodate FIFA sanctioned international football, as well as IAAF sanctioned track and field events.
“We will also establish facilities as part of community hubs within wider community settings like Dennery, and smaller ones like Desruisseaux and Micoud playing field.
“As an administration however, we know that infrastructure in and of itself will not equate to maximizing the benefits of sports,” he continued.
“Building capacity, increasing coaching and providing more avenues for competition will be pivotal to achieving this objective. This will become the focus of the collaboration that will be established between the Department of Sports and the National Lotteries Authority.”
The youth development agenda of the Department of Youth Development and Sports will be further complemented by empowerment programmes supported by the Caribbean Development Bank, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
These interventions will collectively focus on support for young people in the wider regions of Castries, Dennery, Anse La Raye, Soufriere, and Vieux Fort. (Julitta Peter)
CASTRIES, SAINT LUCIA – Jamaica retained the Under-16 regional title, having won the 2018 Caribbean Netball Association Jean Pierre Under-16 Netball Championships which was held in Saint Lucia, with hosts Saint Lucia placing second, and Barbados third.
The Jamaicans were the defending champions and have now won the tournament a record 12 times.
Jamaica, won all six of their games scoring 230 goals and with 82 against, a goal difference of 148.
Christina Byron was the MVP of the Jamaica team, which was named ‘best defending team’ and ‘best shooting team’.
Second placed Saint Lucia won 4 of their six matches played, drew one against Barbados, and lost one to Jamaica. They scored 192 goals with 125 against, a goal difference of 67.
Saint Lucia was named the ‘most improved team’ trophy.
Saint Lucia’s Netballer of the Year Megan Nestor, and Dasha Eugene were the only two players returning from the 2016 CAN Under-16 tournament which was held in Barbados, in which Saint Lucia placed fourth.
Third place Barbados, who like Saint Lucia had 4 wins, 1 loss and 1 draw. They scored 169 goals and 126 against, a goal difference of 43.
Akia Small was voted as the MVP of the Barbados team, which received the ‘best team spirit’ award.
The 2018 CNA Jean Pierre Under-16 Netball tournament, played from Saturday April 7, to Wednesday April 11, 2018, featured seven teams; namely Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and host Saint Lucia.
The other MVPs named were Shemisia Elcock for Grenada, Monelle Lavia for Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Rohena Paul for Dominica, and Kelicia George Trinidad and Tobago.
In other awards, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines was awarded the ‘most disciplined team’ and 11-year old Selina Brown of Grenada was named the youngest player of the tournament.
Trinidad and Tobago won the shooting competition, and was voted the ‘best uniformed team’ and ‘best team on parade’.
Netball Saint Lucia’s Liota Charlemagne-Mason was recognized during the closing ceremony Wednesday evening, for taking up the mantle to stage the tournament.
Prime Minister Allen Chastanet, who was present during the games, commended the organizers as well as the Department of Youth and Sports for assisting with the staging of the tournament which he said augured well for netball in Saint Lucia. Congratulating team Jamaica for what he described as their “incredible level of competition”, the Prime Minister went on to commend all the teams. “I was impressed with the talent witnessed throughout the tournament and the passion and commitment which was on display,” Prime Minister Allen Chastanet said Wednesday night.
The youth championship is named after international Trinidadian netballer Jean Pierre and was first held in 1998 by the Caribbean Netball Association each year except 2003, 2007 and 2013. Sixteen countries from across the Caribbean are eligible for participation.
Saint Lucia, playing remarkably from day one of the just ended Jean Pierre under-16 Netball tournament, placed second behind winners Jamaica.
During Wednesday evening’s prize giving ceremony, at the Vigie Multi-Purpose Sports Complex in Castries, Saint Lucia’s Keresa Augustin received “the President’s young achiever award” while Bernet Joseph was named the “Most Valuable Player.”
Saint Lucia’s Department of Youth Development and Sports has a new Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary in the person of Mrs. Liota Charlemagne-Mason.
She assumed the said position effective Thursday February 01, 2018, as the Ministry continues on its mission to strengthen growth and capacity building, which undoubtedly will rebound towards the further enhancing of the Ministry’s product.
Mrs. Charlemagne-Mason, the latest addition towards this growth and development process holds a degree in Information Systems Management and by extension Human Resource Management.
In addition, she boasts of a Post Graduate Certificate – Masters in Sports Management.
Not to be undone, she has been employed for twenty one unbroken years in the public service, and in the process sought to bolster quality work ethics via commitment and professionalism.
She was Netballer of the Year in 1990, and Coach of the year in 1997 (netball), and been elected President of the Saint Lucia Netball Association on numerous occasions.
Mrs. Charlemagne-Mason, is the current President of the Saint Lucia Netball Association, and despite the numerous challenges encountered, has sought to bring a level of stability and attitudinal change towards the sport.
ST.GEORGE’S, GRENADA – The Republic Bank Right Start GCA Under-19 Inter-parish tournament is officially underway. It was launched on Wednesday April 04, 2018 at the Grenada National Stadium.
President of Grenada Cricket Association Dwain Gill, explaining the format for this year’s tournament said that the competition would be played in a round robin basis among five participating teams St. Andrew, St. David, St. George, St. Mark and St. Patrick.
There will be two matches per day, at various venues across the island including the National Stadium, Progress Park, La Sagesse, and River Sallee playing fields.
The winner of the Rightstart Cup will advance to the Right Start GCA Sister Isle challenge shield. The shield according to GCA president Dwain Gill noted would be a one-off fifty-over match between the Carriacou Under-19 team and the winner of the Right Start Under-19 cup carded for Sunday, April 15th at the Lauriston Mini Stadium, Carriacou.
According to Gill, at the end of the tournament, the chairman of selectors Steve Mahon and his panel would select a 17-man squad to form the National Under-19 team in the GCS Super50 Cup scheduled to bowl off a week after, as well as the Windward Islands Under-19 tournament in Grenada in the latter part of June 2018.
Commending the Republic Bank on their sponsorship for the fourth consecutive year, Gill said that it was a partnership that would bear fruit for the nation’s young people. He praised Managing Director Keith Johnson, the Management and staff of Republic Bank Limited for continuing the partnership with the GCA in what they consider a tournament that could have a positive impact in terms of players’ involvement and youth development.
“As we continue to build a foundation for the future and success of our younger generation it is our hope that we together can work and develop emerging players. There is still a long way to go and only through a joint effort we will be able to reach a fundamental goal”, Gill stated.
Republic Bank Ltd has committed $12,000.00 towards this year’s tournament.
Windies senior team pacer, Alzarri Joseph and Windies A team all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall have been in an intensive rehabilitation and fitness program.
Joseph’s program has been geared towards helping him recover and rehabilitate from a stress injury to his back, sustained during the Windies tour of New Zealand late last year. Joseph has already completed four weeks of physical training and is currently on his 16 day of “return to bowling” program.
High-Performance Director Graeme West is pleased with Alzarri’s progress and reaction to the rehabilitation program. West indicated “The really positive thing so far is that there’s been no negative reaction by his body to bowling. Roddy Estwick has introduced a couple small technical changes that we hope will help his efficiency and take a little bit of stress off his bowling action.”
Cornwall, on the other hand, has had a shorter period since starting the fitness program but is making quick progress. He has played a considerable amount of cricket over the last 6 months. However, CWI has identified a window where he could focus on some physical training and he is currently working six days a week with strength and conditioning coach to complete a three-week program.
West was also pleased with the progress and determination that Cornwall has shown, “He’s progressing very well and will be putting that to the test soon, with some club cricket in Antigua. The ultimate goal is to have him ready for ongoing tours to include, but not limited to Windies A tour of the England, CPL, Super50 and the 4-Day League.”
Both Cornwall and Joseph train at the Coolidge Cricket Ground. Strength and conditioning expert Ronald Rogers, is part of the team included in the recovery of both players.
The program is managed by West, along with Dr. Oba Gulston Manager of Sports Medicine and Science, along with Rogers and bowling consultant Roddy Estwick.
KINGSTOWN, ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENASDINES; MONDAY APRIL 23, 2018 – Five matches in the 2018 National Club 8Under-14 Championships, were played on the opening day Saturday April 21, 2018 at two venues, namely Campden Park and the Chili Playing Field.
In Zone A matches on Saturday morning, in the first match played at 9:30 a.m., SV United defeated DESCO 12-0 at the Chili Playing Field, and then at 10:45 a.m., Owia United lost to Sparta FC 0-3.
In SV United’s defeat of DESCO, Nelly Sampson found the back of the opposition’s nets in the 23rd, 29th, 40th, 48th, and 55th minutes, respectively.
His colleague Quincy Charles netted in the 12th, 26th, and 36th minutes, respectively, and also contributing to the rampage were Shaquil Glasgow in the 11th and 52nd, Percy Henry in the 28th, and Jeffan Collins in the 42nd.
Over at Campden Park at 09:00 a.m., in a Zone C match-up, System 3 defeated Largo Heights 4-0.
Hitting the winners for System 3 were Tariq Nicholls in the 4th minute, Jaymarie Jack in the 11th minute, Rasheed Wallace in the 21st, and Kareem Davis in the 41st minute.
In Zone D at 10:15 a.m., Camdonia Chelsea won 3-0 over North Leeward Predators, and then at 11:30 a.m., Jebelle FC won over Layou FC by the same 3-nil margin.
Owia United, North Leeward Predators, and Layou FC all lost their matches by default, failing to report to the assigned venues for their matches.
Matches in the 2018 National Club Under-14 Championships organised by the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation, will continue this weekend at Layou, Chili, and Campden Park, respectively.
On Saturday April 28, 2018 at the Chili Playing Field, in Zone ‘A’ matches, at 2:30 p.m., DESCO will take on Sparta FC, and at 3:45 p.m., it will be SV United versus Owia United.
Over at the Layou Playing Field in Zone ‘D’ matches, Camdonia Chelsea and Jebelle FC will do battle from 9:30 a.m., followed by the Layou FC versus North Leeward Predators match from 10:45 a.m.
There will be only one match in Zone ‘C’, which is Avenues United FC versus Largo Heights at Campden Park from 09:30 a.m.
This Zone C match will be followed by a Zone B clash between K&R Strikers and Toni Store Jugglers at 10:45 a.m.
The weekend action will culminate with Glenside Ball Blazers versus Toni Store Jugglers Zone B clash at 2:15 p.m. at Campden Park on Sunday April 29, 2018.
Club Franciscain of Martinique were crowned the champions of the inaugural CONCACAF Caribbean Shield, by way of a 2-1 victory over Suriname’s Inter Moengotapoe in a fiercely contested final at the Estadio Cibao in Santiago on Saturday night April 21, 2018.
The keenly contested affair brought down the curtains on a ten-day long competition, which saw the two teams carry their unbeaten run into the finale.
At the end of 90 minutes, Yann Thimon’s 43rd minute goal proved to be decisive, with CONCACAF’s Director of Caribbean Football Horace Reid presenting the Caribbean Shield to team captain Stephane Abaul as the Franciscain team erupted into wild celebrations at the venue.
There was also reason for Bonaire’s Real Rincon to celebrate as they clinched third place in the evening’s earlier encounter with a 3-1 win over Deportivo Nacional of Aruba.
Their goals came from Renault Cicilia in the 7th, Jeremy Frans in the 12th and Cicilia again on the 30-minute mark.
Later on, It was Inter Moengotapoe who got off to a dream start in the feature match, when Romeo Kastiel put them ahead in the 5th minute of play.
The goal woke up Club Franciscain as both teams found their rhythm in what was arguably their toughest encounter of the competition. The Martinique-based club would find the equaliser through Djenhaef Mainge in the 15th minute, and it was game on from then.
Moengotapoe enjoyed the better possession of both teams but Franciscain slipped ahead against the run of play and did not let up after that decisive moment. Thimon rose to meet a cross from the left side and got to the ball before goalkeeper Obrendo Huiswoud to head into the right corner of the net for the winner.
Both teams went for it in the second half, shifting gears and looking for the opportunity to break the opposing defence. Club Franciscain should have extended their lead in the 76th minute when Mainge was sent through on goal, but Huiswoud was quickly off his line to deny his low effort with Moengotapoe outnumbered in defence.
Tried as they may, there was no coming back for Moengotapoe as Franciscain kept their composure to see out the three minutes of added on time to emerge champions at the end.
Their head coach Dominique Zaire was delighted with his team’s success which puts them into a playoff with the fourth placed team from the upcoming Caribbean Club Championship Finals, for the chance to qualify for the 2018 Scotiabank CONCACAF League.
“Tonight we were tested and we came through to be champions of the competition. It was a very difficult match for us but we expected nothing less. The both teams had been well throughout and tonight it was Franciscain who prevailed in the end,” Zaire said moments after the final whistle.
“It is a big moment for Martinique’s football and for the people of the country. We had the opportunity to come here and create history by winning the first ever Caribbean Shield and we are very proud of this achievement,” Zaire added.
“The players have worked very hard and they believed that this could be their time to win something. They never complained and they rose to the occasion. I am very proud of them and now we will go back home and regroup, continue to prepare and look forward to our home competition and the playoff for the CONCACAF League,” stated Zaire whose team boasts of six players on Martinique’s national team, which appeared at the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Team captain Abaul was in an equally jubilant mood, saying “This was the goal we set for ourselves once we landed here for the competition. It was the first time to play in such a competition for the club and for many of my teammates. There was nothing else on our mind other than to keep winning, playing good football and bringing home the victory in the final.
“This victory is for Martinique, for the club president, for the fans, all the staff members and most importantly for all the people of Martinique. It is a wonderful achievement for us and a great way to end the competition,” Abaul said. (courtesy-: concacaf)
KINGSTOWN, ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – “You performed… I am so proud of you!” These were the words of Manager and Head Coach of Avenues United FC Marvin Fraser, as he expressed his heartfelt thanks for the yeoman service performed, not just by the players of Avenues United FC during the club’s participation in the just concluded CONCACAF Caribbean Club Shield; but also to the management team.
He thanked the management team of Carlton Dennie – the Assistant Coach, Ozari Williams – the Physio, Janielle Browne – the Administrative Assistant, and Kevin Richardson – the Goalkeeper Coach and Equipment Manager.
According to Fraser, all those officials in their various capacities contributed immensely towards ensuring that everything worked smoothly, even in circumstances which taxed their resolve.
Speaking of the players, he said they all gave 100-percent, a few others more than 100-percent. “The guys on the bench, the guys who weren’t selected, supported and made sure that they were part of a team. I really want to thank all of them for doing that.
He went on to state, “You performed, I am proud of you. We went through undefeated. It is the first time a club from this country have gone to a club championship anywhere and have won games, did not lose any, and has been eliminated by a technicality.
“I have to let you know that the CONCACAF guys that I spoke to said that we played epic football. The times that we attack they could not believe it, they were in awe!
“You guys did well. You have received high praises out there. We worked together, we will continue to work hard, for we will go back out there again.”
Speaking of his immediate reaction following the realisation that Avenues United FC would not be advancing to the semi-final round, Fraser said that it was “one of disappointment because the team did not get past the preliminary round. But also one of joy, because I got to see my players compete at a level that most persons would not have expected to see a club from St. Vincent and the Grenadines compete at.”
He spoke of the two-goal advantage Avenues United enjoyed going into the 80th minute, and then “one of our players got injured.”
The injury to the left-back forced him to make a substitution, and with tired legs forcing players to react slowly to situations, an additional substitution was made.
“We fell behind to a headed goal from a corner, and then a poor decision from the official in the middle of the park, giving Real Rincon a penalty; it was then two each.
“They advanced because they had a better goal difference. Having played Hard Rock of Grenada and beating them 3-1, while we beat Hard Rock 3-2,” Fraser explained.
The Avenues United manager spoke highly of the younger players, a number of whom are students at secondary schools in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
“The person who was breaking up all the plays in the middle of the park, he is actually sixteen years of age. He did that to resounding applause from all of the people who were there,” stated Fraser. “They could not believe that he was only sixteen.”
The conditions in the second game did not help the young player, and in the later stages of the match, his energy levels dropped. Another young player who came on as a substitute, was instrumental in Avenues United third goal in the first game.
“They all performed at a very high level and can only get better,” a pleased Fraser added.
Meanwhile, Executive Members of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation, are very pleased with the performances of Avenues United FC, following their unbeaten run in the 2018 CONCACAF Caribbean Club Shield in the Dominican Republic.
The Vincentian club missed out on advancing to the semi-final round with a plus 1 goal difference compared to SV Real Rincon with a plus 2 goal difference.
Avenues United FC played two matches, won one, and drew the other.
Speaking on behalf of the Executive Members of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation executive, First Vice President Otashie Spring said that “we must be very proud of the performances of Avenues United. They competed in a different environment, and played their best.
“Lapses in concentration is something we must help our players to overcome, but Avenues United having played undefeated, reaching the brink of advancing to the semi-final round, makes us happy.
“We now have to use Avenues’ experience to better our game here, for come next year, we would want the club participating to go even better.
“Avenues despite whatever shortcomings, prepared their payers well, they had to deal with a change in playing schedule, yet they performed creditably, and so the executive of the Executive Members of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation, is most please with their performance.”
Marvin Fraser has revealed that the next step for Avenues United is to professionalise the club in such a way that, “we no longer have to go out and compete in the Shield, but actually in the CONCACAF Championship itself.
“So that we can get to the Champions League sooner than having to go through the Shield. That mean the players at home you have to get them mentally prepared, physically prepared, for what is out there.”
On Tuesday April 17, 2018 Avenues United FC, faced with a must win situation, had to play their game against SV Real Rincon at 11:00 a.m., on an artificial surface, in conditions which forced two separate water breaks to be had in each half for both players and officials.
This was because of the heat coming not just from the sun, but also from the artificial surface. Players and officials had to be constantly wetting their shoes with water, because of the discomfort of the heat.
“My guys are not accustom to that but yet they were able to participate and compete,” Fraser pointed out. “The Bonaire team Real Rincon have artificial surfaces at home so they knew what it was like. Despite that the Real Rincon players were forced to wet their shoes at the water breaks.”
Fraser further pointed out that the lack of experience of playing on such surfaces showed in the later stages of the game. Concentration was lost, and the substitutions made failed to adapt to the pace of the game as soon as they went in.
He said that since the players are back home, whatever Avenues United does from now on, the aim is to compete regionally and internationally.
“Our goal is looking beyond our competition here. Of course you have to win home in order to get the opportunity to represent here,” stated Fraser.
Fraser is looking forward to hosting foreign clubs and taking part in regional club competitions, as part of the programme to keep the players fit and focussed.
One of the lessons that Marvin Fraser and Avenues United FC have learnt is that “we need to have football structured here in such a way that our guys play football for more than 90 minutes. That it is a problem plaguing our footballers in that after 75-80 minutes they lose focus, they lose concentration, their energy levels drop completely, and then we become susceptible to goals.
“It happens to us at a national level. We as clubs need to ensure that our players train and eat properly, and have that positive, professional mentality.
In addressing the players from across the length and breadth of St Vincent and the Grenadines, Fraser advised them to “keep fighting, keep getting better, be somebody who is coachable, do not think that you have achieve anything no matter if somebody tell you how good you are, because when you get out there it is a totally different system.
“We need to be exposed to the environment that is out there. We have to learn to adapt. We have to learn to get serious. We have to get to the level where you are not satisfied with just being a good talent at home.
“Talent is just half of it. Hard work gets you further than talent, and so we have to have the mind frame that you have to work hard to achieve.”