Boxing should also see the Cubans battling it out for top honours against the likes of the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana, all at the top of their game. There is always the possibility of upsets from St Vincent and the Grenadines and Grenada or Barbados.
Tennis is an open field with the Bahamas throwing down the gauntlet to all the others.
The Caribbean Games will feature the very best athletes in the region competing against each other before their own people. The region’s best are among the best in the world in the various disciplines and there should be no reason proffered for the absence of any of the top guns at this most historic event.
Of course our top athletes may well want to assure the people who gave them their start in sport an opportunity to see where they have reached.
Every Caribbean citizen should therefore make a very special effort to be in attendance at the inaugural Caribbean Games.
In today’s world sport is not exempt from the trend towards the use of managers and agents. Today’s sport is big business and the managers and agents of athletes are eager to ensure that the talented ones in their charge are recipients of what is considered just reward for the display of their talents on any stage.
One can therefore expect that coaches, managers and agents would want to be part of the big event.
Organisers in Trinidad and Tobago have already collaborated with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) to shift the dates of the track and field competition for the Games. Originally scheduled for 17 – 19 July 2009 the athletics competition will now be held during the period 12 – 15 July, essentially opening the Caribbean Games 2009. The morning of 12 July will witness the conduct of the Men’s and Women’s Half Marathon, along the Priority Bus Route in the same manner used for the Annual UWI SPEC Half Marathon. Later that same day the teams will gather for what promises to be a spectacular Opening Ceremony.
There seems little doubt that the inaugural Caribbean Games will also attract many of the leading coaches in the Americas and perhaps farther afield who are all anxious to know what it is about the Caribbean that allows a grouping of small, seemingly insignificant countries to so consistently produce some of the best athletes in the world.
Some international coaches, agents and managers may well be seeking out talented athletes by way of recruitment for their own enterprises.
The Trinidad and Tobago government has committed millions of dollars to the realisation of the inaugural Caribbean Games – a major undertaking. The government has agreed to follow the lead of some hosts of the Olympic Games and other multisport Games and underwrite the accommodation, meals and local transportation expenses of all participants. One can therefore all the more appreciate the magnanimity of this gesture on the part of the Trinidad and Tobago government in these trying economic times.
Since Caricom Heads of Government delivered their support en masse in Antigua and Barbuda last year it is expected that each of the respective governments would endeavour to ensure that their respective National Olympic Committee (NOC) (or Commonwealth Games Association – CGA – where an NOC does not exist) participates in the inaugural Caribbean Games. This is critical to the success of the event.