Owing to the adjustment of Barbados’ new COVID-19 restrictions, the Barbados Amateur Swimming Association President, Cheryl Lady Forde, on Thursday announced that the CARIFTA Swimming Championships would be postponed.
The Championships, which had been slated for March 26th to April 7th this year, went into limbo after host country Barbados faced a new wave of coronavirus cases and moved to implement an island-wide lockdown.
Locally, Guyana Amateur Swimming Association (GASA) President Dwayne Scott is relieved at the news of the postponement.
“Rightfully putting it, it is a necessary action that was taken. Because I guess our athletes have not been able to have access to the facility to train since last March. So, for Guyana, it’s a positive if these decisions are indeed confirmed as they were posted,” Scott shared with this publication on Thursday.
He added, “So we welcome that move, because it will allow us a little more time to get our athletes prepared. At the moment, we don’t have access for CARIFTA athletes at the facility, so our athletes cannot train.”
In his comments, invited by this publication, Scott admitted there were some lingering concerns owing to the fact that pools have been closed since last March.
The GASA President commented, “Technically, it would have been a year (since) the Games would have come, and our athletes would have gone into the Games without any level of preparation. So, yes, we would have been at a disadvantage. And I’m hoping that these decisions will push it back even further, you know, so that we can get our athletes adequately prepared.”
When probed, Scott admitted that if the Games had gone ahead as planned, the likelihood of Guyanese swimmers being adequately prepared to compete would have been slim.
“The only preparation we were able to allow our athletes would have been land preparation, which is not appropriate for three months; but this is just for us to keep conditioning,” he answered. “And even if we would have gotten them back in the pool this week, next week, or next month, the time slot from then to the Games was not adequate to allow us preparatory time.”
Thus far, Scott has consulted with Minister of Sport Charles Ramson Jr on the reopening of pools for training purposes. (Jemima Holmes)