Fazim Abdool triumphs in Guyana Amateur Weightlifting Senior championships

November 13, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 
Fazim Abdool performs during his impressive lifts.

Fazim Abdool performs during his impressive lifts.

Fazim Abdool, representing the Hardcore Gym, Berbice, snatched 115kgs then returned with a clean and jerk lift of 142.5kgs to be adjudged best senior lifter when the Guyana Amateur Weightlifting Association (GAWA) held its National Seniors Weightlifting Championship at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, Homestretch Avenue, Sunday last.

In a highly competitive match Abdool, competing in the 94kgs class barely eked out a victory over Sean Cozier, who emulated Abdool’s performance in the snatch but faltered in the clean and jerk category by a mere 2.5kgs.

Lifters from the Hardcore Gym enjoyed a satisfactory tournament through the efforts of Bhojnarine Persaud and Bhojkumar Jainarine, competing in the 69kg and 77kg class respectively.

Persaud snatched 82.5kgs and clean and jerked 117.5kgs to win in his category over Marvis Williams, 85kgs (snatch) and 110kgs (clean and jerk) while Jainarine snatched 80kgs and clean and jerked 105kgs to triumph over Roberto Tiwari of Barims, 65kgs (snatch) and 95kgs (clean and jerk).

Weightlifters display the outfits they recieved from overseas donors.

Weightlifters display the outfits they recieved from overseas donors.

Other outstanding performances were registered by Barims Gym representative Derrick Hyman, participating in the senior boys over 50kgs class.

He snatched 50kgs and clean and jerked 67.5kgs to emerge champion in his class over gym mate Kelvin Moore who snatched 42.5kgs and clean and jerked 60kgs.

In the other categories Teon Wilson, participating in the over 50kgs class in the U12 category triumphed with a snatch of 35kgs and a clean and jerk of 37.5kgs.

Other results read: Kelvin Josiah (Barims gym) clean and jerked 55kgs and snatched 42.5kgs to win from Derron Wright, 30kgs(snatch) and 50kgs (clean and jerk) and Kelvin Moore who placed third with a snatch of 42.5kgs sand a clean and jerk of 60kgs. In the 105kg class Leon Johnson (Barims) emerged victorious with a snatch of 115kgs and a clean and jerk of 140kgs.

Shane Bancroft (Barims) appeared as a guest lifter and snatched 52.5kgs. He also clean and jerked 65kgs.
Meanwhile, the GAWA was the beneficiary of a quantity of lifting gears from several overseas based Guyanese.

The tournament was also graced with the presence of past General Secretary of the GAWA, Aubrey Smith, now residing in the USA and former national lifter, Joey France. The donated gears were immediately presented to several young and promising lifters.

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Andrew Lewis Boxing Gym always open to amateur boxers

October 20, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

– says caretaker

Caretaker of the Andrew ‘Sixhead’ Lewis Boxing Gym (ALBG), Brian Barker, is livid over remarks reportedly uttered by Mayor Hamilton Green after he (Green) visited the Harpy Eagles Boxing Gym (HEBG) recently.

Mr. Green had gone to the Albouystown facility to observe the team of boxers preparing for the current Commonwealth Youth Games in Pune, India. Having witnessed the substandard training facilities at the HEBG the Mayor had wondered aloud why the team was not allowed to train at the more contemporary ALBG.

Barker said that he is presently performing caretaker duties at the ALBG and up to the time of the Mayor’s visit, no member of the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) had made a request for its use.

He said that an agreement existed between the managers of the Gym and executives of GABA for the use of the facility, provided such requests are made in ample time. He said that he only learnt that GABA needed to utilize the facility when the report appeared in the newspapers.

Barker further stated that he was subsequently approached by one of the coaches, Terrence Poole and he (Barker) immediately assented to accommodate the boxers.

Subsequently, the boxers were re-sited to the new location. “This was simply a communication problem that could have been fixed with one phone call,” Barker asserted.

 He also assured that the facility is always open to the amateur boxers while hoping that such an unfortunate situation is not repeated.

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Andrew Lewis Boxing Gym always open to amateur boxers – says caretaker

October 19, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Caretaker of the Andrew ‘Sixhead’ Lewis Boxing Gym (ALBG), Brian Barker, is livid over remarks reportedly uttered by Mayor Hamilton Green after he (Green) visited the Harpy Eagles Boxing Gym (HEBG) recently.
Mr. Green had gone to the Albouystown facility to observe the team of boxers preparing for the current Commonwealth Youth Games in Pune, India.
Having witnessed the substandard training facilities at the HEBG the Mayor had wondered aloud why the team was not allowed to train at the more contemporary ALBG.
Barker said that he is presently performing caretaker duties at the ALBG and up to the time of the Mayor’s visit, no member of the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) had made a request for its use. He said that an agreement existed between the managers of the Gym and executives of GABA for the use of the facility, provided such requests are made in ample time.
He said that he only learnt that GABA needed to utilize the facility when the report appeared in the newspapers.
Barker further stated that he was subsequently approached by one of the coaches, Terrence Poole and he (Barker) immediately assented to accommodate the boxers.
Subsequently, the boxers were re-sited to the new location. “This was simply a communication problem that could have been fixed with one phone call,” Barker asserted.
He also assured that the facility is always open to the amateur boxers while hoping that such an unfortunate situation is not repeated.

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Female amateur boxers leave for T&T today

September 27, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 
The female boxing team along with GABA president Affeeze Khan (left) takes time out for a photo; from left Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles along with Coach James Walcott.

The female boxing team along with GABA president Affeeze Khan (left) takes time out for a photo; from left Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles along with Coach James Walcott.

The female amateur boxing team participating in the Female Pan Am Games in Trinidad and Tobago from October 1-8 departs today for the Twin Island Republic.

Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) President Affeeze Khan expressed pride in seeing the strides the young ladies have made in recent weeks and said he was hoping that they do extremely well in Trinidad.

Khan disclosed that the girls enjoy beauty treatment yesterday (having their hair, nails etc done) so that their feminine side could come out. He expressed the desire to see them qualify for the female World Championships to follow later.

Recently, the team was outfitted with blazers and the GABA boss had disclosed that this was due to the help of several business persons.

Those contributing to the cost of providing the blazers are Maurice Rajkumar, Kamal Kanhai, Amar Ali, George Humphrey and Suresh Sabnani.

The girls; Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles are coached by James Walcott, all out of the Harpy Eagles Gym in Albouystown.

Moses recently won a gold medal at the CABA games in Trinidad, while all the other girls are on their first outing. Marques is a find from Port Kaituma where Mark Yaw has been doing excellent work with the youngsters there.

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BL Crombie amateur boxing tournament cancelled

September 26, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The BL Crombie amateur boxing tournament, which was scheduled to be held at the National Gymnasium on Mandela Avenue from today September 26 to 28, has been cancelled due to the unavailability of the National Gymnasium.

In a release from the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association, it stated that they would like to express sincere regrets to all of the amateur boxing Gyms and supporters for not being able to run off this annual event.

The release stated that the tournament could not have been rescheduled for the month of October because some of their experienced boxers, referees and coaches being overseas participating in other tournaments including the Women’s Pan American Boxing championship which will be held in Trinidad & Tobago October 01- 08 and the 111Commonwealth Youth Games scheduled to be held in India October 12- 22.

It was disclosed that amateur boxers will still be able to showcase their talents at the Champion of Champions tournament set for November 21-23. This tournament will be sponsored by CAMEX LTD. Of 125 C Barrack Street, Kingston, Georgetown.

This tournament promises much excitement and will see 15 young boxers from Port Kaituma in the North West District traveling to Georgetown to participate for the first time at this level.

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Female amateur boxers receive uniforms

September 22, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The female amateur boxing team scheduled to participate in the Female Pan Am Games in Trinidad and Tobago from October 1-8, received their uniforms over the weekend.

GABA head Affeeze Khan (left) takes time out for a photo opportunity with the female team (from left) Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles along with Coach James Walcott as they display the blazers.

GABA head Affeeze Khan (left) takes time out for a photo opportunity with the female team (from left) Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles along with Coach James Walcott as they display the blazers.

Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) President Affeeze Khan disclosed that with the help of several business persons they were able to outfit the team in beautiful blazers made in the colours of the country’s flag.

Those contributing to the cost of providing the blazers are Maurice Rajkumar, Kamal Kanhai, Amar Ali, George Humphrey and Suresh Sabnani.

The girls; Ansilla Norville, Alicia Marques, Mandessa Moses and Amanda Charles are coached by James Walcott, all out of the Harpy Eagles Gym in Albouystown.

Moses recently won a gold medal at the CABA games in Trinidad, while all the other girls are on their first outing.  Marques is a find from Port Kaituma where Mark Yaw has been doing excellent work with the youngsters there.  

The team leaves for Trinidad on September 27.

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Amateur boxers prepare for national duties in T&T and India

September 5, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

By Michael Benjamin
The Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) has selected four women to represent Guyana at the Pan America Women’s Boxing championships slated to get underway at the Chagaramus Convention Centre, Trinidad and Tobago from October 1-8.

 

Alicia Marques

Alicia Marques

Four other boxers are also in training to represent this country at the 3rd Commonwealth Youth Championships in India, early next month.
Those selected for the Trinidad trip are: Ansilla Norville, Amanda Charles, Alicia Marques and Mandessa Moses. James Walcott will perform coaching duties.
However, all but one of the members of the team of four, short-listed to represent Guyana at the 3rd Commonwealth Youth Championships has been identified.
Caribbean bantamweight champion Clevon Rock, featherweight Stephon Gouveia and welterweight, Akeem Alexander have already earned their places while light/flyweights Orlando Alicock and Mulchan Sankar will engage in a box-off tomorrow evening at the Harpy Eagles Gym Harpy Eagles Gym (HEG) to determine the final member of the team.
On Wednesday last Kaieteur Sport visited the HEG and was treated to several action packed encounters as members of the team engaged in sparring sessions.
Also assessing the boxers were coaches Carl Franklyn, Terrence Poole, Evan Parris and James Walcott. At the end of the sessions they all voiced their satisfaction at the application and commitment demonstrated by the boxers.  Speaking during a break in the training sessions Franklyn said that GABA executives are convinced that even though the boxers are relatively inexperienced they are optimistic that the team will turn in favorable performances. Of the lot only Moses has had international exposure.
Only last month she had attended the Caribbean Female Championships staged in the Twin Island republic and won a gold medal.  Notwithstanding this, Franklyn said that the three others are the best of those available since they were the most dominant in a recently staged box-off.
Franklyn further disclosed that the three other coaches assigned to the team-Terrence Poole, James Walcott, and Evan Parris have been working hard on the technical and physical development of the boxers.
He pointed out that the squad attends roadwork sessions at the National Park for a two hour period commencing at around 05:00hrs every morning. They then return at 16:00hrs for gym work which consists of sparring, pads work, school boxing as well as combat boxing.
Franklyn also disclosed that Guyana will be participating in the Commonwealth Youth Championships for the first time since its inauguration three years ago. He will accompany the team as the coach and has expressed confidence that the boxers will perform creditably.
He said that the team of coaches assigned to the boxers is working assiduously to ensure that they attain maximum fitness. The team will leave Guyana on August 27.

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Long Island Amateur boxing Championships underway

August 16, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Guyanese Michael Carryl in the forefront

Michael Carryl The third annual Long Island Amateur Boxing Championships began Thursday at Five Towns Community Center in Lawrence, and concludes today.

The three-day event, sanctioned by USA Boxing Metro and organized by Long Island Amateur Boxing Championships Charities, features 270 fighters from across the country, men, women, boys and girls ranging from 9 to 46 years old, competing for titles in the flyweight through super heavyweight divisions.

The tournament followed a sudden-death, single elimination format, with boxers competing in no more than one bout each day.

Michael Carryl, tournament director and a former boxer, said he hopes the event can boost boxing’s presence in the area. “It helps the gyms in Long Island.

It helps boxing in the smaller gyms to have their boxers who are training so hard to have a very important tournament to attend in their own backyard,” Carryl said.

“They can be proud of something special. This is a Long Island affair that they can be proud of as champions.”

Lending more excitement to the event are two prominent area fighters, Tor Hamer and Shemuel Pagan, who will compete in the tournament.

Hamer, 25, won the event last year and will look to repeat his performance in the super heavyweight division. He is also the 2008 National Golden Gloves champion in the super heavyweight division.

Pagan, 20, an alternate for the 2008 U.S. Olympic boxing team, will compete in the featherweight division.
Both boxers, Carryl said, will help the tournament grow and appeal to more fighters in the area.

“It’s significant that we’re doing things right,” Carryl said. “These two individuals, one an alternate on the Olympic team and the other one being number one [amateur] in the country, it says something about what we’re doing.”
(Katie Strang/Newsday.com)

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Junior Caribbean Amateur Boxing Championships…Guyana claim 5 gold, 1 silver and bronze medals

July 27, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Mandessa Moses and her grandmother, \'Sweet\' Caroline, who funded her trip to TrinidadGuyana’s seven member boxing team to the Junior Caribbean Amateur Boxing Championships in Trinidad and Tobago turned in an excellent performance with every member securing a medal including five golds.

Mandessa Moses became the first Guyanese female amateur fighter to secure a gold medal for her country when she defeated Leeann Boodram of Trinidad in their bout. The others claiming gold medals are: Cleveland Rock who beat Sherwin Dillon of T&T, Herlando Allicock overcame Anthony Duadreen of T&T, Stefan Gouveia, who turned back the challenge of Matthew Speedwell and Moochan Sankar, who defeated Jesse Beckles.

Rondell Douglas (Guy) had to settle for silver after losing to Cobia Bradde (Bar) and Akeem Alexander (Guy) took bronze after he lost to Dillon Gilbert.

National Coach Carl Franklin and his assistant Terrence Poole prepared and travelled with the team to Trinidad.

The entire executive of thDr Jose Da Silva (right) of Modern Optical presents Moochan Sankar with his ticket.  Looking on are (from left) Rondell Douglas, Affeeze Khan, Herlando Allicock and Stefan Gouveiae Guyana Amateur Boxing Association came in for praise from its President Affeeze Khan for the hard work in seeing the sport improve locally. The successful boxers, who travelled to Trinidad, came in for much praise.  They are due home today.  

Khan also had a big thank you for the many sponsors who have come on board to assist the sport, but more so those who have assisted in ensuring the seven boxers compete at the regional event.

Among them that came in for mention are: Amanda St Aubyn of Scotia Bank, Paul Chan-a-Sue of Ansa McAl, Frank DeAbreu of DeSinco Trading, Dr Jose Da Silva of Modern Optical, K. Juman Yassin the Guyana Olympic Association president, Carlton De Four of Caribbean Airlines, Commandore Gary Best and the Guyana Defence Force, Manoram Mookaram CEO of M&M for providing boxing boots for Stefan Gouveia, Bertie Sukhai CEO of Namilco and Feroze Khan for also providing boxing boots for  Allicock and Sankar. 

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Caribbean Amateur Boxing Association Championships

July 25, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Akeem Alexander opens with impressive win for

Guyana

– GABA National C/ships final night set for tomorrow 3:00pm

Akeem Alexander got things off for the Guyanese boxers attending the Caribbean Amateur Boxing Association Championships in Trinidad and Tobago to an excellent start on Wednesday evening.

Alexander fighting in the Welterweight division was too strong for his opponent, Garfield Jean of St Lucia, forcing the referee to stop the contest at one minute in the fourth round.

He dominated his opponent with powerful combinations forcing him to hold on for dear life and the third person in the ring promptly stepped in to save Jean from further punishment.

This victory propels Alexander to the semi-finals. All six of his teammates were down to be in action last evening and were looking forward to similar displays.

Meanwhile, the Jackson and Jackson National Amateur Boxing Championships, which suffered due to a power outage affecting most of the city, have been rescheduled to tomorrow.

The venue remains the National Gymnasium and the action starts at 3:00pm with the schedule finals of the various divisions. All boxers, officials and fans are asked to take note.

A major blackout in the city caused much disappointment for the fighters and a large gathering of fans, who turned up for the action.

The National Sports Commission agreed to the request from the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association for a new date to stage the finals and granted Saturday.

It was decided to start the action during the daylight hours to ensure the fights are staged and the champions decided and also allow those who have to travel, adequate time to return home.

Keen contests are expected and another good crowd is expected as amateur boxing, from all indications, seems headed for a major resurgence of it good days of the 70’s and 80’s. And if the association’s head Affeeze Khan gets his way, the sport can expect a bright future.

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Business entity support amateur boxing

June 8, 2008 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The boxers, coach Carl Franklin display their boots, while GABA President Affeeze Khan appreciate the moment.The Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) received assistance for its boxers when Suresh Sabnani of Jeet Enterprises of 104 Regent Street, Georgetown presented eight pairs of training boots for the boxers and coaches selected to represent.

GABA received the items recently as they continue preparation for the training squad to represent Guyana at the Junior Commonwealth Games in India from October 12-18.

GABA also received gifts for their planned Inter-Club boxing competition on Saturdays from 3:00pm at the National Gymnasium.

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Government commits $20mln to host CBC U-16 Championships

April 29, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

By Edison Jefford
Government yesterday committed $20 million as a prerequisite to Guyana’s Amateur Basketball Federation (GABF) to assist in hosting the Caribbean Basketball Confederation (CBC) Under-16 Championships in July.

Minister of Education, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine (fourth, right) shakes hands with CBC President, Glyne Clarke yesterday while Minister within the Ministry, which has responsibility for Sport, Dr. Nicolette Henry (third, right) share the moment with from left Permanent Secretary, Alfred King, GABF President, Nigel Hinds, Patrick Haynes, GABF VP, Kenrick Thomas and Director of Sport, Christopher Jones.

Minister of Education, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine (fourth, right) shakes hands with CBC President, Glyne Clarke yesterday while Minister within the Ministry, which has responsibility for Sport, Dr. Nicolette Henry (third, right) share the moment with from left Permanent Secretary, Alfred King, GABF President, Nigel Hinds, Patrick Haynes, GABF VP, Kenrick Thomas and Director of Sport, Christopher Jones.

The CBC Executive Evaluation Commission, which is currently in Guyana with CBC President, Glyne Clarke, needed the commitment from Government to ensure Guyana’s capacity to host the Championships, which was last held here in 1999.
Minister of Education, which is the ministry that is responsible for sport, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine made it clear that Guyana is proud to be host of the 2016 Championships at a meeting with CBCs Clarke and Vice-President, Patrick Haynes.
“We are happy to be hosts; we have an interest in not only hosting events but also developmental work. We are happy to host these events because it puts Guyana on show,” Roopnaraine said, as he informed that Cabinet commits to the requisite $20 million.
The minister indicated that the benefits of hosting such a mega event must be pursued. “We want to advance sport in our schools in a serious way; we will be anxious to see a programme of worth that recognises a lot of capacity building,” he said.
Clarke was elated with Government’s position. He congratulated the GABF, while indicating his satisfaction of the physical structure required for the Championships, though some amount of the necessary upgrade is to be done before jump-ball in July.
“What we saw made us very hopeful. Guyana has always been at the forefront of our basketball in the Caribbean; Guyana has always been gracious hosts. We were assured that all the works to be completed are mostly cosmetic,” he said.
“We want to thank Government for coming up with this contribution,” he added. The gathering was informed that the last CBC U-16 Championships was held in 2008. Minister within the Ministry of Education, Dr. Nicolette Henry spoke of the social impact of the Championships.
Henry said that the investment is being made in youth. She stated that it is important that they are exposed to different cultures. “We are happy to host the Championships, but what is important is the capacity building,” she said.
“We hope to have some networking and mentorship programmes done. This is an investment in our young people. We are looking at this in terms of human development. We are looking at this as more than sports,” the minister indicated.
“There will be lots of opportunities and we want to ensure that we maximise those opportunities to ensure we get the required value,” she continued. GABF President, Nigel Hinds thanked both ministers for their commitment to its vision for the sport.
“We at the GABF are very grateful for the efforts and commitment of the Government. We had a vision that is now becoming a reality. This will not be just an event that takes place and vanishes. It will have lots of spinoffs,” Hinds concurred yesterday.
“This is a step in the right direction. We are in need of a sports culture. We believe that this is a great investment in Guyana’s youth. We are grateful to Government and the Ministry of Education. This is a wonderful moment for us,” Hinds concluded.
The Caribbean Confederation through its per diem programme will add 25 percent of the budget to host the event while the other budgetary sums will come from corporate sponsorship. Hinds is hoping that corporate Guyana grab this opportunity.

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PPP Parliamentarian complains about RDC councilor

April 25, 2016 | By | Filed Under Letters 

Dear Editor,
My first encounter with Carol Joseph was when she joined a taxi I was in on my way to Georgetown. It was sometime before the 2015 General Election, and the political landscape was the subject of discussion between the other two passengers, both in their early 20s.
As a political analyst, I obviously joined the discussion and asked whether either were familiar with the economic situation that existed in Guyana prior to the 1992.
During my brief history presentation to the young voters, the driver stopped to pick up another passenger. Not knowing who she was, I continued my discussion.
It didn’t take long for Carol Joseph to let me know who she was and proceeded to verbally abused me with saying that I am “lying” about the PNC. I was sitting in the front seat and she was seated directly behind me. She intensified her threatening behavior for the rest of the journey. I was happy when I arrived at my destination.
My second encounter with Carol Joseph occurred on Veterans Day last year. I was asked by the PPP/C Parliamentary Representative for Region 5 to represent her at the Veteran’s Day parade which was held in front of the Regional Office at Fort Wellington, WCB. Before the parade started, I was in conversation with the Vice Chairman and other invitees when Carol Joseph approached and distributed ‘Puppies’ to everyone in my group but ignored my presence.
After she walked away, someone commented that as the organizer of the event, her behavior was very disrespectful to a Member of Parliament. I then approached and advised her that I was filling in for my colleague, the Honorable Priya Manickchand.
She said I could not do so because Priya did not inform her that she will not be attending. After I protested to the Regional Chairman, I was allowed to participate in the veterans’ memorial ceremony.
Carol Joseph was again verbally abusive to me as I instructed the PPP/C Councillors of the Woodland / Bel Air Local Authority Area to walk out of the kangaroo proceedings held at the local NDC office, after Minister Ronald Bulkan selected APNU+AFC Councillors as Chairman and Vice-chairman in a tied NDC where the People’s Progressive Party had won the plurality of votes in the just concluded Local Government Election. Again I ignored this woman.
Then last Thursday, at the invitation of Region 5 Regional Chairman Vickchand Ramphal, I travelled to Fort Wellington to attend the monthly statutory meeting of the Regional Democratic Council as an observer.
Since the year started, the Regional Chairman has been prevented from conducting the people’s business because APNU+AFC Councillor, Carol Joseph has been influencing the other APNU+AFC Councillors to interrupt the meetings. She was subsequently suspended, but continued to show up with the aim of stopping these proceedings. I was armed with my video camera to document any disruption that may arise.
As I approached the location, adjacent to the Fort Wellington Police Station, I observed a hostile crowd carrying placards blocking the entrance to the RDC building. To avoid navigating my vehicle through the crowd to get into the compound, I parked my vehicle on the side of the road, some distance away from the unruly protestors.
As I approached the entrance to the compound with my video camera in one hand and my tripod in the other, the crowd zeroed in on me like a target, pushing placards in my face and trying to block my entrance to the building.
As I walked away, APNU+AFC Councillor, Carol Joseph, deliberately moved to block my approach, waving her outstretched hands up and down using derogatory comments. I tried to pass when her right hand was in the upright position, but she brought it down quickly and brushed the side of my head. I ignored this deliberate assault as I was not hurt in any way, and proceeded to the RDC Boardroom.
Shortly after, I was told that she had made a report at the nearby Fort Wellington Police Station, that I had assaulted her.
Of course, the only part of my body that came in contact with the APNU+AFC provocateur, Carol Joseph, was when her descending right hand deliberately struck me on my head. But as I said in my statement to the police, had I been so foolish to have done that, the angry mob would have torn me in pieces.
I then videotaped the so called ‘protestors’. They were unruly and disrespectful, even to the police. When Chairman Ramphal arrived, the mob was determined to prevent his entry to the RDC Boardroom. The ringleader, Carol Joseph, sat down in the middle of the driveway directly in the path of the Chairman’s vehicle. Several attempts by senior police officers to have her moved were met with the singing of “We shall not be moved.”
As I took video clips of an uncharacteristically subdued Carol Joseph while she defied direct instructions from a senior police officer to clear the driveway, I wondered how a person could ever be entrusted to make unbiased decisions as an RDC Councillor in the best interest of the residents of Region 5.
This woman is an embarrassment to the entire APNU+AFC coalition as well. I urge Present Granger to intervene and put an end to Carol Joseph’s behavior, and send a strong message to APNU+AFC supporters that he will not tolerate any form of insurrection that hinders progress in Region 5 or anywhere else in Guyana.
Harry Gill, MP (PPP)

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American Athletic Union Basketball Team visit to British Guiana in 1965 was historical

April 24, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Statistician Charwayne Walker continues his look back this week with the visit to Guyana in 1965 by the American Athletic Union Basketball team as he goes back down memory lane in keeping with our 50th Independence Anniversary.
One year before independence, July 1965, basketball in British Guiana was given a tremendous boost with the visit of the high profile American Athletic Union basketball team. The tour was made possible through the Department of States’ Educational and Cultural Exchange Programme with the British Guiana Basketball Association acting as hosts.
Key men in the United States squad: Jim Brovelli began his basketball career playing at a high school in San Francisco and was named San Francisco Player of the Year in 1960, Jim was a student at the University of San Francisco.
Lee Lemos was born in Latvia and lived most of his early childhood in Germany until he came to the United States in 1950 and was adopted by an American family. He was an outstanding basketball player in Kentucky, wining state, regional, conference and district honours. Lee played university basketball at Eastern Kentucky State College and was the fifth highest scorer in the school’s history.
Leon Clements, a student of Ouachita Baptiste University in Arkansas where he studied Biology and Physical Education. He had been a regular starter in every varsity basketball at the University and during his career has broken several conference and career scoring records.
Rodney Hoist played his basketball at Colorado State College as a center. He played in National Collegiate Athletic Association Regional Tournament and was voted most valuable player on his team. After graduation from the University, Rodney Hoist taught at a school in Denver, Colorado and joined an amateur team in the city. His team took second place in the 1965 Amateur Athletic Tournament.
The coach of the United States team was Bill Vining and the manager was John Lewis.
The 1965 team was led by Godfrey “Chin” St. Hill with Hewley Henry as player coach.  The tourists opened their 1965 British Guiana Tour with an emphatic 80-31 points victory at Burnham’s Court at Parade Ground against a rest team led by Joseph Small.  Other members of the rest squad included Derek Spence, Stuart Spence, Melroy Fitzalbert, Bolton Applewaite. Gordon Spooner, Frederick Clarke, Lenny Braithwaite, Maurice Chase, Patrick Hanes.  After trashing the rest team at Burnham’s Court, Parade Ground, the tourist engaged British Guiana in three international matches at Queens College auditorium.
Game One:
The Athletic Union basketballers won 96-48. Gene Summers was outstanding for the visitors with a game high 19 points; he was supported by Verne Benson with 18 points, Calvin Fowler 14 points, Lee Lemos 14 points and Rodney Hoist 12 points. Eagles’ Compton Nicholson top scored for British Guiana with 14 points. Player- coach Hewley Henry lent support with 13 points, while the late Charles ‘Torani’ Clements finished with 12 points.
Game Two:
The American Athletic Union Basketball Team won 74-43, Gene Summers top scored again for the visitors with 23 points. Calvin Fowler 12 points, Verne Benson 10 points. Charles ‘Torani’ Clements top scored for British Guiana with 12 points, Compton Nicholson had another solid game with 11 points, while player –coach Hewley Henry had 7 points.
The Americans dominance continued in Game Three with a 102-34 points blow out. Calvin Fowler was fantastic for the Americans with a game high 26 points. Verne Benson supported Fowler with 18 points, Lee Lemos finished with 13 points.  Charles ‘Torani’ Clements again was the outstanding British Guiana player with 10 points, Eldon ‘Rocking chair’ Vaughn had 5 points.  Although British Guiana lost the series to their more superior opponents the experience gained would later prove to be invaluable.
After independence in 1966, Guyana basketballers toured Boa Vista in 1968 and played unbeaten, Hewley Henry’s men also swept Suriname 3-nil in 1969. The following year, 1970 Guyana played under the captaincy of Royals’ Ronald Pickering and won an International Triangular Series involving Trinidad and Tobago and Martinique.  Guyana also humbled Trinidad and Tobago again at the Central American Championship in Venezuela in 1971 and was very competitive against El Salvador, host Venezuela, Panama and Puerto Rico.
The 1965 American Amateur Athletic Union Basketball Team
Rodney Hoist
Dean Church
Leon Clements
Jim Brovelli
Lee Lemos
Verne Benson
Calvin Fowler
Gene Summers
Jim Meyers
Bill Vining –coach
John Lewis –manager
The 1965 British Guiana Team
Godfrey ‘Chin’ St. Hill -deceased
Michael Brusche
Charles ‘Torani’ Clements- deceased
Compton Nicholson
Speedy Franklin
Wallie Murray
Ronald Pickering
Raymond Goulding
Eldon Vaughn
Hewley Henry –player/coach
Ken Barrow

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National Basketball Championships to be replayed tonight

April 23, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

-Barbadian referees, Henry will officiate in Final 
After a damp squib a month ago, The National Basketball Final returns to Cliff Anderson Sports Hall tonight

Neil Marks

Neil Marks

where a new champion will emerge from the contest that brings together two teams that are competing for their first national title in their second Finals appearance.
Linden’s Retrieve Raiders will play Georgetown’s Colts United in the National Basketball Final: The Road to Mecca III in a replay of the controversial March 19 final, which was left abandoned after Raiders walked off of the court with 9:18 left on the game clock in the fourth quarter, down 51-54 against Colts.
Pacesetters had managed to squeeze pass Ravens 78-76 for the third placed prize. The top award will hopefully be decided between the top and second placed club in Guyana. Barbadian FIBA accredited referees along with Guyana’s FIBA, Sherwin Henry will officiate in the game.
Raiders had walked off the court to protest what they called “poor and biased officiating” after a player was hit with two technical fouls. To eliminate the accusation, Guyana Amateur Basketball Federation (GABF) went for foreign referees for the game.
The Championships game is a match-up between Colts United’s efficient backcourt and Raiders formidable frontcourt. Raiders’ strength is its height advantage with centre, Jason Alonzo, and forwards Marvin Hartman, Omally Sampson, Dwayne Roberts and Neil Marks, combining for an average height of about 6’4″ in the paint.

Keon Cameron

Keon Cameron

Colts’ backcourt will be challenged to get pass Raiders towers. Point guard, Dave Causway leads an efficient backcourt that includes Shelroy Thomas, Kurt English, and sensational new addition from Kwakwani, swingman, 16-year-old, Stanton Rose.
Colts will leave Onicko Fraser and national centre, Shane Webster to battle Raiders’ ‘bigs’ while the Raiders will hope point guard, Keon Cameron withstand the pressure of Colts’ guards. It was a balanced contest on March 19 and tonight should be no different.
Before the Final, The National Anthem will be performed as halftime shows are also scheduled. The cheerleaders will dominate a final hoorah to bring the curtains down on the Championships.
The Mackeson Girls and Stereo Sonics Sound will add to the entertainment.
Kirk ‘Chow Pow’ Jardine is the host. The winning team will pocket $500,000 while second place will go home with $250 000. Pacesetters won $150,000 and Ravens $100 000. An MVP will also be named following the Finals tonight.

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Fiona Harris cremated following Service to celebrate her life

April 21, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The remains of first female to hold the reigns as President of the Guyana Amateur Body Building and Fitness Federation (GABBFF) Fiona Harris was yesterday cremated at the Memorial Gardens Crematorium, Princess Street and Louisa Row following a stirring service at the North Ruimveldt Church of the Nazarene.

The remains of Fiona Harris (inset) is taken out of the Church for the Memorial Gardens Crematorium yesterday afternoon.

The remains of Fiona Harris (inset) is taken out of the Church for the Memorial Gardens Crematorium yesterday afternoon.

Harris, who would have celebrated her 38th birthday tomorrow passed away recently following a brief period of illness.
Family, relatives and friends came out in numbers to pay their final respects to an individual who was remembered as a friend and encourager.
In eulogizing Harris, Pastor Tito Bourne reflected on the life of Harris from her early childhood until the time of her passing. She was remembered as a trailblazer and someone who displayed a high degree of tenacity in life.
The former Winfer Gardens and President’s College student was a sprinter who competed in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m relay as well as field events which underscored her love for sports.
But her most memorable career in the field of sports was when she hit the stage as a body builder, making her mark as an intense competitor in Body Fitness and Body Building, Pastor Bourne, reminisced.
Harris was a two-time Ms. Guyana Body Building champion and one of Guyana’s best during her days of competition. She also competed in the Ms. Body Fitness category and would have done well in a number of other competitions apart from the national marquee events.
Her highest competition would have been the Central American and Caribbean Championships that were held in Guyana in 2004 when she made the finals in the Ms. Body Fitness class but did not medal.
She then turned her attention to sports administration, starting as a committee member before taking over as treasurer and then rising to the coveted post of President, thus becoming Guyana’s first female to ever lead the GABBFF.
Bourne noted that the greatest achievement of Harris during her older days would have been caring for her daughter as a single parent.

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Although Guyana failed to medal four boxers were outstanding

April 17, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The 1974 World Amateur Boxing Championship in Havana, Cuba
Forty – two years ago, August 1974, seven young pugilist, Michael Reid, Mark Harris, Egbert Evan Parris, Keith Neil, Ramesh Best, Winfield Braithwaite, Reginald Ford accompanied by Coach Humber Green, Manager Leslie Alleyne and Doctor Ishri Singh departed Timehri International for Havana, Cuba to participate at the World Amateur Boxing Championship. Although Guyana failed to medal, Mark Harris and Reginald Ford reached the quarter finals. The other outstanding Guyanese pugilists were Michael Reid and Evan Parris.
Today, Kaieteur Sports and Sports Statistician Charwayne Walker looks back forty – two years ago at the performance of the seven men who carried the Golden Arrowhead in Havana.  We start with the late Ramesh Best fighting in the junior fly weight division. Best was stopped in the first round after being floored two times. He lost to Hungary’s Gregery Jedo. Keith Neil fighting in the light middle weight division, lost to Poland’s Jerzy Ribicki. Neil retired in the second round.
Nineteen year old Winfield Braithwaite, fighting in the feather weight division, lost on points to Italian Salvadore Melluzzo. Michael Reid fighting in the light weight division left an indelible impression on the Cuban people and their leader Fidel Castro in his first fight. Reid destroyed Switzerland’s Mark Ritterschofer in the second round in his first bout and gained a standing ovation from the capacity crowd of sixteen thousand but he was disappointed in his second fight and failed to produce the same form he had shown on his debut. According to sports journalist Al McDonald, who went with the team to Cuba, Reid in his next fight against Japanese Okhubo used the wrong tactics. He held his guard two high, while endeavouring to mix it with the muscular Japanese with his body weight of one hundred and twenty six pounds against a hundred and thirty two pounds of the Japanese, that was a mistake and he was floored in the second round whereby the referee halted the contest.
Egbert Evan Parris fighting in the bantamweight division knocked out Kufuti Byanjine of Zaire in the first round. In his next fight against Nigerian Enenogo, Parris was way ahead on points when the bout was halted in the third and final round with blood streaming from Parris’ face. The Nigerian was repeatedly warned by the referee for ducking too low and using his head in the clinches and as the boxers disengaged from one of those clinches Parris’ face was streaming with blood from two cuts. The referee immediately halted the bout and the ring side doctor ruled that Parris was unfit to carry on.
Reginald Ford fighting in the welterweight division beat East German, Manfred Weider on points. Ford won his second fight when Northern Ireland, John Rodgers was disqualified in the third and final round. Ford lost in the quarterfinals to the Cuban, Emilio Correa by technical knockout in the second round.
Mark Harris fighting in the light welterweight division, stopped Gustava Flores of El Salvador, the referee called a halt to the proceedings in the second round. Harris won his second bout by a unanimous decision against Canadian Robert Proulex. Harris lost to Ugandan, Kalule in the quarterfinals by a split decision.
The other West Indian boxers that lost in the quarterfinals were Trinidadian, Nathaniel Jones and Jamaican, Malcolm McCallmon.
The land of many waters never attended another World Amateur Boxing Championship, so let’s salute the flag carriers of 1974. Mark Harris (deceased), Ramesh Best (deceased), Winfield Braithwaite, Michael Reid, Egbert Evan Parris, Keith Neil and Reginald Ford.

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Fiona Harris to be laid to rest on Wednesday

April 17, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The first female President of the Guyana Amateur Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation (GABBFF) Fiona

Fiona Harris

Fiona Harris

Harris who passed away last Sunday will be laid to rest on Wednesday.
Wake will be held at her mother’s residence South Ruimveldt on Monday and Tuesday night with the funeral on Wednesday.
Viewing of the remains will take place at the Crematorium on Princess Street between 13:00 and 14:00hrs with Church Service slated for the North Ruimveldt Nazarene Church, Kaikan Street from 15:00hrs.

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German’s Restaurant makes financial contribution to Dolphin Speed Swim Club

April 15, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

In keeping with its commitment to support the development of sports, German’s Restaurant

 CEO of German’s Restaurant Mr. Clinton Urling (left) hands over the cheque to President of the Dolphin Speed Swim Club Mr. Paul Mahaica while a representative of the Club looks on.

CEO of German’s Restaurant Mr. Clinton Urling (left) hands over the cheque to President of the Dolphin Speed Swim Club Mr. Paul Mahaica while a representative of the Club looks on.

on April 13, donated an undisclosed cash incentive to the Dolphin Speed Swim Club towards the club’s One Day Inter Club Swim Meet scheduled to take place on April 24, 2016 at the National Aquatic Centre, Liliendaal, East Coast Demerara.
The competition is expected to see five registered clubs of the Guyana Amateur Swimming Association go head to head for bragging rights. And will feature some of the country’s elite swimmers.

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GAWA to host Best of the Beast Fitness Challenge

April 15, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The Guyana Amateur Weightlifting Association (GAWA) and member Gym, BE Fitness Gym has scheduled a

GAWA General Secretary, Seon Erskine

GAWA General Secretary, Seon Erskine

‘Best of the Beasts’ Calisthenics and Functional Fitness Challenge for Sunday April 24 at the National Gymnasium from 10am.
In a test of strength and speed, a series of events will be done as tests to be completed in the fastest time possible. “It is a knockout event so only a determined number of fast finishers will qualify to the next round,” GAWA said in a press release.
Registration for the event is $500 and can be completed at the BE Fitness Tower Gym on Main Street. According to the press release, registration closes on Monday. No equipment is required to compete “just a will and strong heart”.
The events are listed below:
 Round 01
. Suicide Push ups (10)
. Pistol Squats (30)-women jump squats (30)
. Dips (60)
. Up Downs (30)
. Pull ups/bar pull (20)
. Mountain Climbers (100)
Round 02
. Jump Rope (400)
. Dip Squats (45)
. Overhead Tire press (50)
. Push ups (80)- females full body press ups (60)
. Hills and Over (15)
. Ab Roll out (25) females (15)
Round 03
. Farmers Walk (04 x 20 meters)
. Power Lunges (06 x 20 m)
. Battle Rope (45 reps)
. Jumping jacks (100)
.Step ups (50)
. Spider Crawl (06 x 20 m)
Round 04
. Burpees (50)
. Box Jumps (30)
. Sand bag Climb (10)
. 400 meter run (01)
. Tire Flips (04 x 10 m)
. Suitcase Crunches (4

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First GABBFF female President described as stalwart

April 14, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

Flex Night Inc. pays tribute
Guyana’s first female body building President Fiona Harris who passed away on Sunday night

Fiona Harris pictured handing over a token to HRC Guest Poser on May 2nd, 2010, T&T IFBB Pro Bodybuilder, Candice Carr-Archer.

Fiona Harris pictured handing over a token to HRC Guest Poser on May 2nd, 2010, T&T IFBB Pro Bodybuilder, Candice Carr-Archer.

last following a brief period of illness has been described as a stalwart in the sport by current President of the Guyana Amateur Body Building and Fitness Federation (GABBFF) Keavon Bess.
Bess, who took over the leadership of the sport from Harris in 2012, described the late administrator and athlete as a true stalwart in local body building.
“Harris championed the cause of female involvement in the sport and for local athletes in general. She will be greatly missed and the body building fraternity has yet again suffered a great loss. Condolences to her loved ones and her family from the GABBFF,” Bess noted.
Flex Night Inc. the last entity which utilised the expertise of Harris, who would have celebrated her 38th birthday on April 22nd, next, reminded that she was the proud holder of the Miss Best Legs title in Guyana.
Managing Director Donald Sinclair on behalf of Flex Night Inc. reflects: Once more the Bodybuilding and Fitness community must say farewell to one of its own – Fiona Harris. After rendering quality service as a judge, statistician and general organiser at bodybuilding events, both in Georgetown and in outlying areas, Fiona was invited to assist the Flex Night Directorate.
In the midst of the stresses and intense deliberations of a Board of Directors meeting, she always seemed to be able to wear a smile and remain unruffled, as if reminding us of the importance of human warmth and cheer even in our most exacting situations.
This trait is of special significance when it is recalled that, for her, attending meetings often meant driving alone some 15 miles each way. Her colleagues at Flex Night are deeply appreciative of the time and care that Fiona was willing to dedicate to the cause of bodybuilding.
To her surviving relatives, especially her dear and most beloved daughter, Khadija, we express the fervent hope that sadness that lasts through the night will soon dissipate and be replaced by the joy that cometh with the morning.”
Harris is expected to be laid to rest sometime next week.

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Jamaica Boxing Association names three-man team for Int’l junior tourney here

April 10, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The Jamaica Boxing Association will be represented by a three-man team which they named last week to

 Stephen Jones

Stephen Jones

represent them at the International Schoolboys and Junior Boxing tournament set for Guyana this month end.  Stephen Jones, President of the JBA, informed that two boxers and a coach have been confirmed to make the trip to Guyana.
The two boxers, Joshua Forrest Davidson (69 kg) and Daniel Hylton (60 kg) would be accompanied by Coach Robert Napier.
Hylton has been to Guyana before, competing last November in the Caribbean Development Tournament. He beat Guyanese Christopher Moore in his first fight but was later stopped by Trinidadian Justin Parris.
The Schoolboys and Juniors’ tournament will be contested on April 29 and 30 at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall and has been organised by the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association.
Guyana Boxing Association (GBA) President, Steve Ninvalle, said that Jamaica was due to send a larger contingent. However, one of its top junior fighters died by drowning late last month.
The tournament is the first of its kind in the region and comes on the heels of the 13-nation Caribbean Development Tournament held here last year. The English speaking Caribbean has been trying to improve their fortunes after sending a total of 36 fighters to last month’s Olympic Box Off in Argentina, with only two qualified.  They have decided to place heavy emphasis on the junior programme to ensure a better quality fighter as they advance.  Ninvalle stated that Barbados and St Lucia are also confirmed to participate but are yet to send in a composition of their teams. This is expected by Wednesday.

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CBC Youth Championships return to Guyana after 16 years

April 10, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

-Caribbean Confederation increases per diem
The Caribbean Basketball Confederation (CBC) Executive Committee approved an increase to the daily

Nigel Hinds

Nigel Hinds

per diem (daily allowance) for all participating national teams for CBC Championships from US$30 per day to US$40 per day.
This is according to a press release from CBC yesterday. The release indicated that the increase is with the first deposit of US$1,000, which is due on Friday. The daily per diem increase was an initiative by the CBC Vice-President of Finance and Marketing, Guyanese, Patrick Haynes to attract National Federations to host the qualifying Youth Championships.
With 18 visiting national teams participating in this year’s Youth Championships, the daily per diem will offset the host National Federation’s budget by US$100,000 or 25 percent.
The CBC Youth Championships is returning to Guyana sixteen years after it was last held there in 1999. Twelve men and eight women’s national teams will battle for supremacy in the U-16 age category in the Caribbean where the top three teams in each category will qualify for the 2017 CentroBasket U-17 Championships.
“The Cooperative Republic of Guyana and the Guyana Amateur Basketball Federation (GABF) through its President, Nigel Hinds, has demonstrated a great know-how in organising high level tournaments by hosting the Inter-Guiana Games, the GABF National Championships and other International Games at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall in the capital city of Georgetown,” the release from CBC observed.

Patrick Haynes

Patrick Haynes

Members of the CBC Executive Evaluation Commission are scheduled to visit Guyana from April 27-May 2 for the first of two site visits leading up the Championships.
The Evaluation Commission will also meet with representatives from the Government of Guyana, Guyana Olympic Association and Corporate Guyana to customise long-term development programmes and strategies with the aim of implementing concrete development programmes in collaboration with the Federation.

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‘I just want us to get better. I am tired of losing’

April 8, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

WICB President Dave Cameron talks about what he has done to turn things around for West Indies cricket, and the difficulties of getting everyone on the same page.

"In ten years' time, when they have seen what we have done in this era, they will recognise what had to be done in order to move West Indies cricket forward" © WICB Media/Brooks LaTouche Photography Ltd

“In ten years’ time, when they have seen what we have done in this era, they will recognise what had to be done in order to move West Indies cricket forward” © WICB Media/Brooks LaTouche Photography Ltd

Dave Cameron smiles when reminded he has been WICB president for three years. “Three years and two days,” he says. We are sitting in the lobby of a hotel in South Mumbai a day before West Indies’ World T20 semi-final against India. The smog is heavy on the Arabian sea across the road at nine in the morning. Cameron arrives on the dot at the agreed time, wearing a T-shirt with the WICB insignia on the right bust, and jeans. Stern-faced to begin with, he opens up gradually.
Cameron has been painted as an autocrat, strong-willed and not given to bending to the wishes of others. In person, he comes across as strong-minded, forceful, a persuasive talker.
He thinks he is misunderstood. But he has no time to deal with opinions. He says he is sick and tired of West Indies losing their long-held eminence. In this interview, he talks of how he came to be WICB president, why he has taken the decisions he has in order for West Indies cricket to move forward, why the players should trust his vision for growth and development, and much else besides.

A big shot in the arm for you and the WICB that the BCCI has gone ahead with the India tour?
We are delighted. The next step now is to ensure we have a competitive series.
Did you expect this to happen?
We anticipated that the series would go on. We had it scheduled alongside the CPL, so we had made all the arrangements, including even the CPL draft, so that all the Test players would be available for the series.
Were any conditions put forth by the BCCI?
I don’t necessarily want to go into the conditions. At the appropriate time we will announce exactly what the arrangements are.
On March 27, 2013 you became president. You won the elections for a second time on March 7 last year. You are 47. You must feel proud to be elected twice to an important and influential position at a young age?
One needs to go back and reflect on how I have gotten here. At no time did I aspire to be president.
I am actually the president of my club – Kensington Cricket Club – in Jamaica. Proud, proud president of that club. Going 16 years now. I was then asked to participate in the Jamaica Cricket Association, and I took up as a treasurer. Then I was asked to sit at the WICB, where I have been for the last 14 years. At the tender age of 32 I went to WICB. Through serving the game they asked me to lead the sport.
I want to bring a different mindset to the leadership of West Indies cricket, in that my objective is not to be the president but to make West Indies cricket better. And that is why some of my decisions are a little unpopular because it is about turning around our sport, something that means so much to the West Indies civilisation. We have been very bad for a very long time. If you know history, it always shows that somebody needs to take a firm grip, make some very dramatic changes and then we will start to see the changes from there.
Unfortunately we have been putting band-aids on the issues over the years without really addressing them and restructuring the game. We have done that. That is my proudest moment. It has caused the issues in India [the team pulling out of the tour in 2014]. Very unfortunate, and we continue to be disappointed about the way that turned out, but again, the programme was all rolled out and agreed prior to [the India tour]. What we didn’t do, the step that we did not have covered, was to sit with our players and be able to explain exactly how it would been done. So we would have dispatched a team to come to India to sit with them, and that was scheduled for, I think, two days before the actual falling out of the events.
That is the unfortunate bit. We are 16 islands, so it is not very easy to have everybody in one place for discussions, so we felt it was better to come on this side [India], where we would have had all the senior players and met them between the end of the ODI series and the beginning of the Tests. All the players could have gone through the new system, and so hopefully that would have been prevented.
Be that as it may, we are here now, our new franchise system has been in place for the last two years. The first season, we did not really have a chance to prepare players. This year is our first proper season and we are starting to see a lot of young players coming through. Of course some of them are 27, 28, but they are mature enough to push for places in the Test team. I am happy that we have been able to do that. A little sad that it has taken the route it took.
What have been your biggest achievements in the job so far?
Our entire domestic cricket is professional. In 2013 the CPL was introduced under my tenure. Our players moved from being paid US$5000 for the tournament to being paid $150,000, since, for the first time, we introduced contracts. Then we introduced the Professional Cricket League (PCL). We are playing more [domestic] cricket. For the first time we have started to create a cricket industry where youngsters can actually look on and say, I can be part of that. I don’t have to be in the elite 15, as it used to be, to be able to earn a living and to be competitive in the sport. And, of course, I can’t leave out winning the Under-19 World Cup. It was very, very special to us.
What did the WICB contribute to that U-19 win?
We contributed everything. Because we have not been having issues with our players’ association for the first time in the last two years, we have been able to concentrate on cricket. Prior to 2013, when we took over, we were paying an average of over a million and a half dollars a year in legal fees. All we were doing was battling with our players’ association, arbitration, mediation. So we spent a lot of time just dealing with legal issues, and not focusing on the development of the sport. When we took over with the agreement we signed with WIPA, we were now able to focus on development and what our players needed to get better. For the first time the U-19 players played in our Super50 last year. We had a number of camps in between. We also had a high-performance team deployed to assist the U-19 squad. We also changed the format of U-19 cricket last year, to play more 50-over matches over three-day games.
We realised when our players got to U-19 tournaments, a lot of times they had only played four or five 50-over matches. So they lacked experience. Because of the professional set-up, players benefited from being a part of that. No longer do we have a semi-professional or amateur sport, we now have teams practising all year.
Take the case of [Shimron] Hetmyer, who has been a part of the Guyana franchise system for the last two years. Keemo Paul and [Tevin] Imlach got scholarships from the Guyana Jaguars as well. Alzarri Joseph has been playing in the Leeward Islands set-up from last year. These were the standout guys in the U-19 World Cup. Hetmyer came back and scored a century in the PCL. We are very, very proud of what we have achieved with those U-19s. We now have a blueprint and we will be improving on that in the next tournaments. Get nervous.
You are not a popular man in the Caribbean. Virtually everyone seems to disagree with you. Why is that?
(Smiles) My approach may be a little bit different from what is customary. It has been said that I am little forthright. My objective is that everyone understands me once they get to sit down and talk to me. I am very straightforward. It is probably a Jamaican thing: we will tell you exactly how we feel. It is not personal. It is just that I would like to win. We have a very, very strong sense of winning, of doing well. We have just been doing bad for a very, very long time. I just don’t have ten years to take my time to turn around what is a very big ship. So changing the way we do things, have discussions about being more professional about the way we go sometimes rubs people the wrong way. And if I do, then I apologise, but the truth is, I just want to get better. I am tired of losing.
We have had a win-loss record that is not something to smile about. The only way we are going to be able to turn that around is, we have to be more professional, force our players and the management and the board of directors to step up and be better at what we do.
Players are the most important asset for any board. How would you describe your relationship with them?
My relationship with the players is fine, as between any president and his players. Obviously I would have liked it to be a little bit different at this point in time. But again, coming out of what happened in India and the views expressed by some that they had lost money with the restructuring – again I need to explain for you because it has not been told in full… To be continued (ESPNcricinfo)

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Referees Council will not officiate without GABF apology

April 7, 2016 | By | Filed Under Sports 

The Guyana Basketball Officials Council (GBOC) is maintaining it needs an apology from the Guyana Amateur Basketball Federation (GABF) President, Nigel Hinds if is to proceed with the National Basketball Championships, which ended in controversy on March 19 when Linden’s Retrieve Raiders had walked off the court with 9:18 left on the game clock in the fourth quarter, down 51-54 against Colts.
GBOC in a letter last week stated that it needed an apology from GABF President, Hinds. After the furore, distinguished academic and former FIBA international licensed referee, Jay Mandle had issued a letter after meeting with stakeholders last Thursday at Marriot, where he stated that the abandoned National Basketball Championships Game should be rescheduled since that is the only way to determine “the better team and the rightful champion”.
In addition, the GABF, Linden Amateur Basketball Association and Georgetown sub-association met on Saturday at an Extra-Ordinary Meeting and agreed that the game will be replayed in its entirety. Below is the full text of GBOC letter:
The finding by Mr J. Mandle, the former FIBA certified referee, pertaining to the halting of the Clubs Championship Finals Road to Mecca III on the March 19, 2016 between the Retrieve Raiders and Colts were correct. The Guyana Basketball Officials Council (GBOC) would accept that the Referees erred by not declaring the winner.
It must be known to Mr. Mandle that the GABF President intervened and said to the Referees that he is the Commissioner of the game and has the right to overrule the referees’ decision; the Referees immediately voiced their opinion that the President had no right to intervene since the Referees were in charge of the game.
At that moment it was clear that a breakdown in communication arose, which led to an exchange of words. There was no police protection for the Referees during the games, which was agreed to by the GABF.
Therefore, the Referees were left to the mercy of the fans, who invaded the playing area to vent their anger. The GABF seems bent on having the game replayed, but no one seems to care about the Referees, who had to put up with the disrespectful words from the fans and players, which the GABF is aware of.
Based on the reckless statements made by the GABF and some players and I quote “unwarranted call by the Referee” and profanities hurled at the Referees by the players after the game; GBOC would not take part in any replay of the Road to Mecca III if there is no apology from the GABF and the comments made by players not addressed.
Yours Sincerely,
Dexter Douglas
GBOC President

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