Size in Caribbean sports conflict

The reality is that Jamaica is only really superior to the rest of the Caribbean in terms of medal hauls at regional and international athletics meets. When however one factor
s into the equation the ratio of medals per head of population we experience a very different reality.

St Kitts/Nevis gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in 2002 spoke to a superior performance at the Games than Jamaica when medals per head of population are factored in. St Kitts/Nevis has a population of just more than 40,000 people as compared to Jamaica with more than 2.5 million and Trinidad and Tobago with more than 1.7 million. Indeed it was better by comparison that all of the more advanced and geographically larger nations that constitute the membership of the IAAF.

Home Truths

Unfortunately for us in the Caribbean, the legacy of colonisation remains so much a part of who we are and who we become that we cannot bring ourselves to being genuinely committed to regionalism. The matter of superior versus inferior always seems to come to the fore

Today, even at the time of writing there are those who continue to perpetuate the myth that size is perhaps the single most important thing in determining who should be where and doing what in the world of Caribbean sport.

The myth is still being perpetrated by some of our sports leaders that people from the small islands cannot represent the region at the international level; they come from countries that are too small.

The fact is that for the most part we are anxious to have unity in our sport. That is as it should be. We in the Caribbean have long sought unity. Our small separate islands have shared the experience of colonisation, slavery and exploitation of the most debased kind and emerged from it a disparate grouping.