National U-23 team wing out for Brazil
- Participation was never in jeopardy – Boyce
The Athletic Association of Guyana (AAG) National Under-23 team departed Guyana yesterday morning to compete at the South American Championships in Brazil tomorrow and Sunday with AAG President, Colin Boyce saying their participation was never in “jeopardy”.
The team comprising Stephan James (200m, 400m), Chavez Ageday (100m, 200m), Natrina Hooper (Triple Jump, 400m) and Cindy Fraser (Long Jump) left Guyana for Brazil through the Twin Island Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. AAG General Secretary, Claude Blackmore will overlook the team and represent the association at the South American Congress.
Boyce told Kaieteur Sport yesterday that the team’s participation was never in “jeopardy” since he was always aware that Guyana will be represented even if the full list of athletes identified to compete was unable to travel because of the usual funding bugbear.
“The team’s participation was never in jeopardy. I do not know what would lead some people to believe that. Yes we had some issues finding money for them to go, but I never said that the team participation was in doubt,” Boyce told this newspaper yesterday.
He said that he had appealed to Government for funding for the full team and they did no answer his call for assistance. As a result, Boyce said that companies such as K&B Mining, Roger Hinds and Toolsie Persaud stepped up to help the team compete at the meet.
Because of the absence of support from Government, Boyce said that Jevina Straker was left off of the team. “If we are seriously looking at a Road to Brazil and these are our future athletes then it is necessary to support them. They made a pledge that we must submit a budget, and when we do, there is no assistance,” Boyce continued.
He said “it is disheartening to know that Jevina could not travel because of our Government not contributing to us”. Boyce informed that Sampson remains on the AAG priority list for national selection. The team is expected to return to Guyana on Monday. (Edison Jefford)