The generosity which was extended to the Guyana Rugby Football Union (GRFU) by the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) made this country’s non-participation at last year’s NACRA Sevens Tournament faded memory.
Yesterday, the GOA made good on a promise it made to the Union following earlier discussions when President K. Juman Yasin handed over a cheque worth $3million to President Peter Green in the presence of Secretary General of the Association Hector Edwards and rugby officials yesterday, at Olympic House.
The money according to Yasin is to go towards the team’s airfare to Mexico to participate in the NACRA Sevens Tournament with the winner guaranteed automatic qualification to the Pan Am Games next year in Toronto, Canada.
According to Yasin, contrary to the pronouncement made by an official of the National Sports Commisssion (NSC) last year about providing unequivocal support for athletes in their quest to reach Rio, the GOA has begun the journey to the 2016 Olympics.
“We expected the NSC and the Ministry of Sport to already be on board but so far they’ve not done so and this is why we have repeatedly called for a National Sports Policy to be presented so that all associations and athletes could have a clear understanding of the extent of support they will receive,” Yasin said.
Green in his remarks described the occasion as a joyous one for the sport and the Union reminding those present that last year Guyana suffered for not being able to raise the funds in sufficient time to confirm participation and was subsequently excluded from the tournament.
The Union Boss spoke of the distinguished record that Guyana possesses when compared to other Caribbean nations, battling some of the top countries in the sport in the world.
Green pointed out that there is every incentive to win the upcoming tournament since it will finance fully their trip to play in the Hong Kong Sevens Series, an event that Guyana has participated in several times.
“The stakes are high and I hope that all Guyana do not see us as another organisation out to get money, but rather as an investment that could guarantee further success in the future,” Green stated.
Green then thanked the GOA for its support and assured that the team is not going merely to take part, but rather to take apart the opposition. He appealed to other corporate entities to come on board.
Edwards in his remarks spoke of the genesis of the GOA’s support which he said came after the Executive Committee would have looked at the team’s recent success, informing that it was not an easy decision, but they felt it necessary and important to do so.
He added that the GOA expects the team to make it to the Pan Sam Games in Toronto, Canada next year. The NACRA Sevens will be hosted by Mexico in December.
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