dance with an Olympic mascot between matches on the final
day of the 2007 FIVB Beach Volleyball Women's Challenger
in Beijing on Sunday. The competition was a test event for
the 2008 Olympic Games. AP Photo
originally planned to write about the pathway to excellence
The choice of topic came about after I read an article about
the number of hours Tiger Woods dedicates to fitness training
and how his commitment had paid off when he recently won
his 13th major at the USPGA.
In the article Woods boasted that while others were wilting
in the 39C temperatures, he felt fine.
According to poet Robert Burns, the best laid plans of mice
and men often go awry and leave nothing but grief and pain
instead of promised joy.
With the plans to construct the National Carnival Centre
in start up mode, the demolition of the Grand Stand at the
southern side of the Queens Park Savannah meant that
a new venue had to be found for the Annual Independence
No quibble with that. One did not need to be a rocket scientist
to figure that one out. However one may have had to be a
rocket scientist to foresee that the Harvard and Caribs
rugby pitches on the northern side of the Savannah would
be the new venue.
Rugby may not be considered a major sport in T&T, but
rugby enthusiasts share similar passion and love for their
activity as do football and cricket fanatics, to name two
major and popular sports.
So you can well imagine the dismay felt by the rugby fraternity.
In my capacity as secretary of the T&T Rugby Football
Union (TTRFU) I was caught in the maelstrom. When called
upon, I could offer no plausible explanation, made to appear
clueless at best and grossly incompetent at worse.
The futility of the situation, compounded by the stark reality
that given the perception of rugbys status in the
national psyche, the sport would most certainly not be allowed
to rain on the twin islands eagerly anticipated Independence
The evidence mounted as neither I nor anyone else on the
TTRFU executive for that matter could save face by claiming
Pathway to excellence!
There is this small but annoying and mocking voice within
that always seems to become most vocal during moments of
self doubt. Pathway to Excellence! There is no where
to play rugby until after Independence, tennis courts have
taken over and you are going to pontificate about Excellence
mocked the hitherto small voice.
The status and esteem of a Senior Counsel may be required
if a disgusted, skeptical and flat out angry rugby fraternity
is to be convinced that their beloved pastime is not the
black sheep of T&T sport. Conspiracy theories abound.
Some far fetched, others suffused with logic. But regardless
of the preamble the conclusion remains - someone wants to
run rugby out of town.
Pathway to excellence!
It is really proving a tricky topic. Here comes Hurricane
Dean, an act of nature, mind you, to compound things. No
promised joy thats for sure.
The TTRFU men and womens rugby teams journeyed to
Cayman Islands for the NAWIRA Rugby championship which was
cancelled due to the threat posed by Hurricane Dean.
Fifty two T&T citizens in total, many of them young
men and women under the age of twenty-five representing
the red, white and black now had to be to be brought back
home ahead of schedule .
Armchair critics and alter egos always have the benefit
Mouse or man, unless I can read minds, predict the weather
or the future, charter or manufacture an aircraft or dissipate
a hurricane. It does not seem timely to talk about pathway
On a brighter note, it is important that we all rally behind
the T&T U-17 and U-15 national football teams.
While the U-17s will be battling in South Korea, the U-15s
will be in action here at home. So there is no excuse not
to go to the National stadium and support the youngsters.
Good luck also to the track and field team at the IAAF world
championships in Osaka, Japan.
Since we cannot predict the future, we can only pray and
hope for the best for our Caribbean neighbors who at the
time of writing are preparing to face Hurricane Dean.