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May 26, 2020

OpEd: The IOC Stands in Solidarity With All Athletes and All Sports

Much has been written lately about the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s finances. Some of these…
May 26, 2020

Stellar example Duncan teaches art of adaptability

Marcus Duncan knows how to adapt to different circumstances. While other athletes have suffered because…
May 24, 2020

Chow remains focused Olympic rower trains harder during lockdown

For Team Trinidad and Tobago’s top rower Felice Aisha Chow, being defeated by the circumstamces…
May 23, 2020

TTOC President Lewis claims cancellation of Tokyo 2020 would put NOCs in "a big hole"

Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) President Brian Lewis claimed the cancellation of the Tokyo…
May 22, 2020

Lewis: Olympic cancellation not good for NOCs

Brian Lewis, president of the T&T Olympic Committee says a great number of National Organising…
May 18, 2020

Mother of invention Athlete Talks, Ultimate Garden Clash born out of Covid-19

I could not have imagined how excited I would get watching on my computer screen…
May 18, 2020

Lewis: We need a culture change

SELF REFLECTION and culture change during the current downtime are the primary elements which can…

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As the coun­try cel­e­brat­ed 181 years of Eman­ci­pa­tion on Au­gust 1st, there were those cus­tom­ary mes­sages that high­light­ing the po­si­tion of the African com­mu­ni­ty in the coun­try.

Where­as neg­a­tives such as crime re­ceived much at­ten­tion ob­vi­ous pos­i­tives and up­lift­ing deeds did not get the same de­gree of recog­ni­tion. There is no gain­say­ing that the African com­mu­ni­ty has con­tributed im­mense­ly in every field of so­ci­ety such as in the econ­o­my, ed­u­ca­tion, pol­i­tics, sports and cul­ture. The African com­mu­ni­ty em­bod­ies the de­vel­op­ment of the so­ci­ety just as every oth­er group and this must not be lost even as we strive to cor­rect the ex­ist­ing so­cio-eco­nom­ic and po­lit­i­cal short­com­ings in our so­ci­ety.

Giv­en the afore­men­tioned, it is im­por­tant to recog­nise the sport­ing con­tri­bu­tion of the African com­mu­ni­ty to T&T and the wider Caribbean that we take for grant­ed and or do not see as im­por­tant as ar­eas such as ed­u­ca­tion. Ar­guably the best ex­am­ples of African achieve­ment in the sport­ing land­scape of the Eng­lish-speak­ing Caribbean is the West In­dies crick­et team es­pe­cial­ly the team of the 1980s in­to the ear­ly 1990s lead by first­ly Clive Lloyd and then Vi­vian Richards. They were con­sis­tent win­ning role mod­els who ex­celled at what they did to the ad­mi­ra­tion and even en­vy of the crick­et­ing world no less than the Eng­lish who in­tro­duced the game in the re­gion. Their achieve­ments in­stilled a great sense of self-con­fi­dence and be­lief not on­ly among crick­eters but among politi­cians, busi­ness peo­ple and the wider pop­u­la­tion.

Some of our African ath­letes who have flown the T&T flag with great pride and dis­tinc­tion whether they have won a medal and or placed re­gion­al­ly and in­ter­na­tion­al­ly over the years are:


*Claude Noel first world cham­pi­on, Mex­i­can Rodol­fo Gon­za­lez to win the WBA World Light­weight ti­tle,1981

*Leslie Stew­art won the WBA World Light Heavy­weight ti­tle in 1987 de­feat­ing Mar­vin 'pops' John­son

*Giselle Sa­landy mul­ti­ple World cham­pi­on- WBA, WBC and WI­BA mid­dleweight ti­tles

*Micheal Alexan­der- Bronze medal­ist Light Wel­ter­weight, Pan Amer­i­can Games 2019; mul­ti­ple medal­ists at Pan Amer­i­can, CAC and Com­mon­wealth Games.

*Body Build­ing- Darem Charles, Michael Her­cules

*Crick­et- Bri­an Lara world record hold­er for the high­est first-class score (501 not out) and high­est Test score (400 not out). Sir Learie Con­stan­tine, Bernard Julien, Ian Bish­op, An­tho­ny Gray, Ann Browne-John, Kieron Pol­lard, Dwayne Bra­vo, Daren Bra­vo, Stephanie Pow­ers

*Cy­cling - Nicholas Paul- Sprint Cham­pi­on Pan Amer­i­can Games, 2019; Keron Bram­ble, Njisane Phillip and Nicholas Paul- gold medal­ists, Team Sprint, Pan Amer­i­can Games 2019; Njisane Phillip- sil­ver medal­ist Sprint, Pan Amer­i­can Games, Li­ma, Pe­ru 2019; Maxwell Cheese­man; Hyl­ton “Bar­racu­da” Mitchell; Roger Smart.

*Dis­tance Run­ning- Lynette 'Granny” Luces; Toya Nero; Michael Alexan­der; Cur­tis Cox; Paul Voisin.

*Foot­ball- Ken­nya Cord­ner; Dwight Yorke won sev­er­al cham­pi­onships in Eng­land and Eu­rope with Man­ches­ter Unit­ed; Alvin Corneal; Sed­ley Joseph; Lin­coln Phillips; Ever­ald “Gal­ly” Cum­mings; David Nahkid, Rus­sell Lat­apy, and Sha­ka His­lop; 'Strike Squad' 1989; 'So­ca War­riors' 2006

*Hock­ey- Kwand­wane Browne

*Net­ball- 1979 World Cup-win­ning team- In­grid Black­man; An­gela Burke-Brown; Peg­gy Cas­tana­da; Heather Charleau; Cyre­nia Charles; Mar­cia Dim­soy; Jen­nifer Nurse; Sher­ril Pe­ters; Eu­ge­nia Theo­dosia 'Jean” Pierre; Veryl Prec­sod; Althea Thomas-Luces; and Jen­nifer Williams.

*Swim­ming- Shan­tol Ince; Siob­han Crop­per; Cer­ian Gibbs;

*Ta­ble Ten­nis- Ver­na Ed­wards; Aleena Ed­wards; Li­onel Dar­cueil Sea­mus Clarke, Dex­ter St. Louis

*Ten­nis- Lystra Lewis; Bev­er­ly Cor­bie; Ivor Grazette,

*Track and Field-

*Hasley Craw­ford gold medal 100 me­tres Mon­tre­al Olympics 1976

*Keshorn Wal­cott gold medal javelin Lon­don Olympics 2012, Pan Amer­i­can Games, Toron­to 2015

*Je­hue Gor­don gold medal 400 me­tres hur­dle IAAF World Cham­pi­onship in Moscow, Rus­sia in 2014

*Cleopa­tra Borel gold shot putt Pan Amer­i­can Games Toron­to 2015

*Jar­rin Solomon, Ren­ny Quow, Machel Ce­de­nio and Lalonde Gor­don 4x400 gold Pan Amer­i­can Games, Toron­to 2015

*Kel­ly-Ann Bap­tiste, Michelle-Lee Ahye, Re­yare Thomas and Se­moy Hack­ett 4x100 bronze, 1AAF World Cham­pi­onship, Bei­jing, Chi­na, 2015

*Khal­i­fa St. Fort, sil­ver 100m IAAF World Ju­nior Cham­pi­onship, Cali Colom­bia, 2015

*Ron­dell Sor­ril­lo, Ke­ston Bled­man, Em­manuel Cal­len­der, Dan-Neil Teles­ford, Wen­dell Mot­t­ley, Ato Boldon, Richard Thomp­son Daryl Brown, Marc Burns, Richard Thomp­son, Mikel Thomas, and Kam­ria Du­rant

*Michelle- Lee Ahye- Gold Medal­ist 100 me­tres- Com­mon­wealth Games 2018- Gold Coast, Aus­tralia.

*De­on Lendore; Jereem Richards; Asa Gue­vara and Machel Ce­de­no- 4X400 Gold Medal- World Re­lay Cham­pi­onship, Yoko­hama, Japan, 2019.

Weightlift­ing- Rod­ney Wilkes was the coun­try's first medal­ist at the Olympics win­ning the sil­ver medal in the feath­er­weight cat­e­go­ry at the 1948 Lon­don Games. At the 1952 Helsin­ki Games, he won bronze at the same event.

It is quite ev­i­dent from the se­lect­ed few ath­letes and sport­ing dis­ci­plines that over the years the Afro-Trin­bag­on­ian com­mu­ni­ty-pro­duced both fe­males and males who have ex­celled so much to the plea­sure and cel­e­bra­tions of the di­verse pop­u­la­tion of T&T. There is no ques­tion that sport will con­tin­ue to be an av­enue for all of our peo­ple in T&T to demon­strate their achieve­ments which will re­dound to the ben­e­fit of this beau­ti­ful twin-is­land Re­pub­lic.

I am sure you can re­call a name or two your­self to help em­pha­sise my point with­in the con­test of this col­umn.

"I don't feel it is nec­es­sary to know ex­act­ly what I am. The main in­ter­est in life and work is to be­come some­one else that you were not in the be­gin­ning." Michel Fou­cault.

Anand Rampersad - PhD (NEW)