When it comes to amateur boxing in the OECS, it seems Guadeloupe and St Lucia are taking the lead to raise the standard of the sport.
Recently a delegation from Guadeloupe Boxing Federation under the leadership of their president George Bousado and two other representatives, met with local boxing officials at Palm Haven Hotel to continue forge links.
At the meeting for St Lucia was President of the St Lucia Amateur Boxing Association (SLABA), David “Shakes” Christopher; Public Relations Officer, Brian McDonald; Creole Boxing Team Manager, Tennyson Glasgow; Treasurer, Lucy Charles Goodman; Coach, Conrad Fredericks; and referees Robert Joseph and Cecile Kerr.
Initial ties were established between the two countries at the Second Annual Creole Boxing Championships which took place in Guadeloupe last year.
Commenting on the recent meeting, Public Relations Officer for the St Lucia Amateur Boxing Association, Brian McDonald said: “We went over a few plans in terms of exchanges not only between the two countries, but encompassing other territories like Martinique, Dominica, Antigua, St Vincent and Grenada.
McDonald pointed out that due to the fact there is no longer a Caribbean Amateur Boxing Association Championship (CABA), there really isn’t a major competition anymore for young boxers from the various islands.
With that in mind he said: “Guadeloupe and St Lucia are trying to lead the way for a revival in sub-regional boxing by having closer ties. The visit by the Guadeloupians is toconcrete a number of discussions and plans which we already had in Guadeloupe. We hope to set up a few programs in the way of exchanges in the coming months, aimed at raising the standard of boxing.
McDonald said the meeting went very well and that St Lucia and Guadeloupe are committed to the cause and will leave no stone unturned, in terms of putting plans down for the future and getting everyone from the other islands involved.
Looking ahead, with the postponement of the OECS Boxing Championships last year, the SLABA is attempting to host a scaled down version of the competition sometime next month.
In other news, the SLABA may have taken a hit when they were not even considered for an Olympic Solidarity Scholarship. It was announced at a recent St Lucia Olympic Committee (SLOC) luncheon, that scholarships were awarded to Levern Spencer, Albert Reynolds, Erma Gene Evans (athletics) and Stephanie Devaux Lovell (sailing).
McDonald pointed that executive members including the president, did not receive any correspondence sent out by the SLOC to the various national sports federations relating to the Olympic Solidarity Scholarships.
The Boxing PRO said “we would have been quite happy to nominate someone like Lyndell Marcellin for that scholarship program, but we are not daunted by that and are continuing with our own programs”.