Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

St Lucia’s Levern Spencer topped a podium of Caribbean athletes in the women’s high jump at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru on Thursday.

Spencer jumped 1.87 metres to get the better of Antigua and Barbuda’s Priscilla Frederick, who cleared the same height, but lost out on count back.

The bronze medal also went to an athlete from the Caribbean as, Jamaica’s Kimberley Williamson leapt to 1.84 metres for third, beating the season’s best of another St Lucia athlete Jeanelle Anna Scheper.

Scheper also leaped 1.84 and was better than Brazil’s Valdileia Martins on count back.

Jamaica’s Latoya Hanson did not start.

World record-holder and world indoor champion Kendra Harrison will face world leader and 2015 world champion Danielle Williams as part of a world-class 100m hurdles field assembled for the Müller Grand Prix Birmingham, the 11th stop on the IAAF Diamond League, on Sunday 18 August.

Undefeated this year, Harrison is in fine form and heads to Birmingham on the back of victories in Stockholm and Monaco on the IAAF Diamond League circuit, following which she won a third consecutive US title.

No stranger to success on UK soil, having broken the world record with 12.20 in London in 2016, Harrison also won the world indoor title in 2018 – her first global medal – when Birmingham played host to the championships.

Williams will also head to Birmingham full of confidence after revising her personal best twice in the space of two hours at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in London. Her winning time in the final, 12.32, is a Caribbean record and the fastest time in the world this year.

Olympic champion Brianna McNeal and two-time world indoor champion Nia Ali are also in the field, alongside Jamaica’s NCAA champion Janeek Brown, world indoor silver medallist Christina Clemons, 2015 Pan-American champion Queen Claye, world indoor bronze medallist Nadine Visser, Jamaica’s Megan Tapper, Olympic fourth-place finisher Cindy Ofili and British champion Alicia Barrett.

Seven Jamaicans will be recognised for their outstanding contribution to the country’s sporting development when the 2019 national honours and awards are handed out during the annual ceremony at King’s House on National Heroes Day, Monday, October 21.

The seven are among 143 Jamaicans who will be honoured overall.

Five of the seven will be vested with the Order of Distinction in the Officer Class. They are First Vice-president of the Jamaica Olympic Association, Chris Stokes; President of MVP Track Club and well-respected track and field analyst, Bruce James; tennis enthusiast, Llockett McGregor; horse racing commentator Brian ‘Spuddy’ Rickman and Hugh Perry, who is being recognised for contributions to cricket and football.

Stokes, is the Chairman of the Jamaica Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation.  He was a member of the Jamaican bobsled team that made history, in the process stunning the world, when they appeared at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.

The movie, ‘Cool Runnings’ was inspired by the exploits of the team.

James played an instrumental role in the creation of the world-famous MVP track club that is based at the University of Technology in Papine, St Andrew. He was firmly of the view that world-class athletes can be trained in Jamaica.

That vision has paid off as the club, under the guidance of the highly respected coach, Stephen Francis, has produced Olympic and World  Champions, as well as world record holders. These include Bridgette Foster-Hylton, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Elaine Thompson and Asafa Powell. The club has also produced numerous other medallists on the world stage.

Also being recognised for their contribution to sport are Christopher Dehring and Margaret Beckford who will receive the Order of Distinction Commander Class.

Dehring is being honoured for the part he played in the successful bid by the West Indies to host the 2007 Cricket World Cup in the Caribbean.

Beckford, the first president of Netball Jamaica, is being honoured for helping to develop the sport in Jamaica.

A 100 per cent fit Sunil Narine is happy to be back bowling for the West Indies and had an immediate impact on the first T20 against India in Fort Lauderdale despite his team’s four-wicket loss.

Defending a paltry 95, the West Indies were in trouble but Narine with figures of 2-14, from his four overs, showed great control and the ability to still take wickets.

“Sunil's four overs very important, he showed his experience, brought us back into the game. Great bowling effort,” said Narine's skipper, Carlos Brathwaite.

"Always good to be back in maroon. Being able to perform for the country is a proud moment,” said Narine after his efforts.

The mystery spinner has been troubled with a finger injury and the workout in Lauderhill was a good way to test where he was.

“Fitness is there, finger is now 100%,” said Narine.

Now, the spinner says his goal is to find consistency.

“T20 I'm trying to stay on for as long as I can. Let's see how it goes. We still have to play positively, start well in the Powerplay, whether we're batting or bowling,” explained Narine.

That positive intent, Narine believes, is the key to winning games again for the West Indies.

“We've to start winning matches. No new thing at the moment, just enjoying my cricket. Hopefully you can see good performances in the near future."

Champion jockey Ricky Jadoo’s perfect ride for champion trainer Glenn Mendez secured a near two-length win for the Jamaica-bred colt Juice Man in Thursday’s Trinidad and Tobago Midsummer Classic at Santa Rosa Park.

A 2-1 joint second favourite in the small seven-horse field, Juice Man, in just his second start in T&T, successfully tackled the front running 16-1 bet Blue Navigator approaching the final turn and galloped stoutly to victory by 1-3/4 lengths in the TT$125,000 (US$18,800) event. The even-money favourite Apocalypse was second and Making Headlines (12-1) third.

The Justyn Kanta Persad-owned Juice Man clocked two minutes 00.40 seconds for the 9-1/2 furlong trip and Mendez is now keen to start the Lakeland Farms-bred colt in the September 24 Trinidad Derby.

“We will look for (another) race or two before the Derby,” Mendez said of Juice Man, who won his T&T debut in early July just a couple of months after his last race in Jamaica in March. The Storm Craft out of Passion colt had logged two wins from eight starts at Jamaica’s Caymanas Park from Triple Crown winning trainer Anthony Nunes’s barn.

Top trainer John O’Brien’s Blue Navigator with Panamanian jockey Nobel Abrego held an uncontested lead for most of the trip but late on the backstretch, Jadoo accelerated Juice Man to move within a length of the lead with Regal Intension (2-1) and Apocalypse under Canada-based Barbadian jockey Patrick Husbands within striking distance.

Coming off the final bend, Juice Man shot past the tiring Blue Navigator while the quickening Apocalypse went in chase with Regal Intension and Making Headlines in challenging positions as a mere three lengths separated the first five horses at the top of the homestretch.

Jadoo, who rode 34 winners in 2018 to snatch his fifth jockeys’ title, glanced – early in the homestretch -- at the looming threat of Husbands and Apocalypse on his outside and roused his mount for a strong run to the finish.

The Apocalypse pressure – despite vigorous left-hand whipping by Husbands – inside the final furlong and a half was mild and good enough only for a clear second as his stablemate Making Headlines finished a further 4-1/2 lengths back in third.

Regal Intension’s Triple Crown bid was scuppered with his fourth place finish and O’Brien’s target miss with his five-pronged entry in the seven-horse field was further compounded by an injury to his Oaks winner She’s So Spectacula.

Owned by Chevan Maharaj, whose colt Supreme Soul captured the 2019 Triple Crown in Jamaica, She’s So Spectacula damaged a sesamoid, a career-ending injury.

For trainer Mendez, Juice Man’s win was his seventh in this second leg of the Triple Crown series and one of his most remarkable having had just a couple of months with the colt. Juice man had never before Thursday gone a trip as long as the 9-1/2-furlong Midsummer with his two wins in Jamaica both five-furlong sprints. Mendez conditioned him quickly to an 8-3/4-furlong win in his Midsummer “prep” on July 6 at Santa Rosa Park, his first run at the Arima racetrack.

“Going into his first race (in July) I tried to do some stamina work because he had never been beyond seven furlongs (in Jamaica) and we weren’t sure how much he would stay. He ran well and actually kicked on in that race,” Mendez said of his Santa Rosa debut win over Trovatore and Blue Navigator.

“We got in a trouble-free preparation so he was ready,” Mendez explained.

Windies skipper, Carlos Brathwaite believes his unit could have made a fight of the first T20 international against India in Lauderhill on Saturday had there been but a few better decisions with the bat.

According to the skipper, the T20 side, stacked with new-ish faces, not for the first time, did not adapt to the conditions they were faced with after early-morning showers made batting a little tougher.

“Once again don't think we assessed conditions,” said Brathwaite after the game the West Indies lost by four wickets.

Batting first, the ‘home’ side amassed a paltry 95-9 from their 20 overs, thanks in large part to Kieron Pollard’s run-a-ball 49.

Sent to bat at number four, Pollard showed experience in waiting for the right moments to get the scoring going, but fell in the 20th over.

Brathwaite paid attention.

“Kudos to Kieron coming back into the team. He showed his experience,” he said.

“Had we made 130, it would've been a different game. We batted ourselves out of the game,” said a disappointed Brathwaite.

The skipper admits that the West Indies style of being aggressive up front would not change, but that there were still better decisions to be made when doing so.

“We have to play positively. The message will continue to be to keep intent, but we need to have better shot selection and awareness,” said the skipper.

India skipper Virat Kohli was not too perturbed by his side’s difficulty in overhauling a small total against the West Indies in Fort Lauderdale on Saturday.

Playing in the first T20 of an Indian tour of the Caribbean, Kohli’s side ran through the West Indies top order, leaving veteran all-rounder, Kieron Pollard, the only man to offer any resistance with his run-a-ball 49, that took the home team to 95-9.

The total seemed too low to be a problem for the powerfully stacked Indian batting line-up but at 69-5 when Kohli picked out Pollard at mid-wicket, the game was very much on.

India would eventually make their way to 98-6, a comfortable enough victory with 16 balls to spare, but it was tougher than it should have been.

“We would've liked to chase it four down, but we wanted to take risks and take the scoreboard moving. As the ball got older, strike rotation became key. It's just about putting in solid performance, ensure the guys who play contribute in some way or the other,” said Kohli.

The Indian skipper had lots to say about his side’s bowling and fielding, pointing out that they did well under the conditions.

“Bowlers were on top throughout, variations were superb,” he said.

The Indian skipper gave special praise to theDelhi Daredevil’s paceman Navdeep Saini, who ended with figures of 3-17. Saini was responsible for the important wickets of Nicholas Pooran, Pollard, and Shimron Hetmyer.

“Navdeep is from Delhi, he's come a long way. Plays the IPL as well, had a great season. Raw talent, hardly any bowlers who can bowl 150 clicks, hopefully he builds on from here,” he said.

Jamaican diver Yona Knight-Wisdom’s silver medal in the 1-metre springboard event at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru may not have been a complete surprise, but the dive he used to get him on the podium was.

Knight-Wisdom, posted a video of a backward triple from the three-metre diving board, saying it was crazy to think this was his worst dive in the not-too-distant past.

“Can we just take a minute to appreciate that his used to be my worst dive on 3M,” said Knight-Wisdom.

The dive gave Knight-Wisdom 81.6 points on the 1-metre board, with one judge scoring it as a nine.

Those points went a long way to helping Knight-Wisdom, Jamaica’s first Olympic diver, to 429.90 overall points and a silver medal.

“Someone tell me how that’s possible please,” said Knight-Wisdom, who takes on the 3-metre event today.

Knight-Wisdom received congratulations from the Jamaica Olympic Association and minister of sport, Olivia Grange.

Grange said: Yona himself said his silver medal was a fitting gift for Jamaica on Emancipation Day and on behalf of the nation I wish to thank him for his historic performance.”

Knight-Wisdom is the first diver to ever win a medal at the Pan Am games for Jamaica.

Another medal came Jamaica’s way at the Pan Am games through an unlikely source, as super heavyweight boxer, one of the few from the island, Ricardo Brown, mined bronze.

This wasn’t the first-ever for Jamaica, but it is the first in 16 years.

The Jamaica Olympic Association and Jamaican trainer Dewith Frazer, were credited with helping to achieve the feat, as the two came together to put on a one-month training camp for Brown in the United States that went a long way to making him more prepared.

"At that gym, Ricardo was able to work with boxers in his weight class and this helped him a great deal because in Jamaica there is a scarcity of boxers in that weight category,” said Leroy Brown, Jamaica Boxing Board General Secretary.

Windies paceman, Shannon Gabriel will be playing in the final three games if the English Division Two Championship for Gloucestershire.

Gabriel joins a team that was expected to struggle this season but found a way to do well, sitting third on the table with three teams set for promotion to Division One.

Glamorgan, who are second, have the same number of points as Gloucester, making for an interesting final few games.

But there have been problems for Gloucestershire, who lost the services, of Australian seamer, Daniel Worrall through injury.

That setback was assuaged with part-time replacements as another Australian, swing bowler, Chadd Sayers stood in for four games. Other recruits Andrew Tye and Michael Clinger will be playing in the T20 Blast, leaving a window for Gabriel to make an impact.

Gabriel. Like Gloucestershire, has been having some problems. The fast bowler, who will be hoping to ensure his new side finishes strongly and earns promotion, has not been bowling well.

Gabriel was dangerous against England in Tests just before the World Cup, but since then, has a dreadful time.

The speedster had a tough time at the recently-concluded ICC World Cup, his express pace counting for very little, as he averaged 86.50 for his two wickets and had the unenviable economy rate of 8.43.

Fortunately, Gabriel has always been a much better red ball bowler and the hope is, he will get back to his best in very short order.

Gabriel does have an opportunity to regain some confidence heading into the stint, as his West Indies takes on India in a Test series just before.

"I'm really looking forward to joining up with Gloucestershire in September and I will be trying my best to help the team push for promotion to Division One," said Gabriel.

"Hopefully I'll be carrying some good form off the back of the Test series against India."

West Indies T20 captain Carlos Brathwaite has come to the defence of injured teammate Andre Russell, who he believes has come in for some harsh press after a number of injuries have impacted his international output.

After feeling discomfort during the Global T20 Canada, Andre Russell asked to be excused from duty for the West Indies in the first T20 internationals against India in the Caribbean.

During a pre-match press conference, Brathwaite, made it clear where he stood on the issue.

Brathwaite tackled those who thought Russell did a disservice to the West Indies’ World Cup hopes, saying:

"And speaking for myself as captain of the T20 team and speaking for myself as Andre's friend, whenever we speak about playing for West Indies, that's always his main goal. And we've seen in the World Cup -whether he was 100% or not, it's debatable - but the fact that he wanted to be at the World Cup, wanted to pull on the shirt and wanted to perform for the people in the West Indies and his mates in the dressing room, I think, is testament to the person he is. And I think we need to start commending the fact that he actually tries to get on the park and stop lambasting the fact that he probably doesn't stay on it till the end of the 50 overs or the 20 overs,” said Brathwaite.

According to the skipper, the more important part of the equation, is Russell’s willingness to play for the West Indies.

"I think he's been knocked in the press a bit because of his injury woes. And I think it's easy for us to see him hobbling around the field and just take for granted that he's injured but we can also look at it on the other side and say he can be home, he could be elsewhere and not trying to play for the West Indies.

Russell, Brathwaite revealed, would have played in these T20s if prodded to do so, despite his less-than-100 per cent fitness status.

"Even against my better judgment, I told him to sit out this series, but he really wanted to play, he really wanted to come and show off his skills and show off what he does in franchise cricket for the West Indies. Unfortunately, he took another knock and he doesn't think that if he comes here that he'd be doing justice to other people who could be here and are 100%. Obviously, he's a big loss, not only on the field but off the field. In the dressing room, in and around the team, he's a big character, very jovial and in my eyes, a leader in the dressing room as well,” said Brathwaite.

The skipper then asked that the press look at the bigger picture, because there were other tournaments the West Indies have an eye on doing well at, tournaments Russell will be important to.

“ … Obviously, if we need to get him ready for the Twenty20 World Cup, we have to do without him for a couple of series, I prefer that than pushing him in this series and making a long term injury.”

The Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) has expressed extreme disappointment with the statements attributed to certain female Olympians (in a recent Sportmax article intituled "Upgraded and Disrespected") who received  upgraded 4 x 400m relay silver medals from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympic Games during the Mueller Anniversary Games in London on July 20.

 

The statements conveyed the impression that the JOA neglected to make appropriate arrangements regarding the attendance of the Olympians at the medal reallocation ceremony in London.

 

The JOA, in responding, enumerated the facts:

 

  1. In compliance with directives of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the JOA was requested to indicate a preferred event at which the medal reallocation ceremony for the Olympians could be held.

 

  1. On May 30, 2019, after consultation with the Olympians, the JOA informed the IOC of the agreed selection of the IAAF World Championships to be held in Doha from September 27 to October 6, 2019.

 

  1. On June 4 the JOA received communication from the IOC advising that discussions will be held with the IAAF regarding the selected event.

 

  1. On June 12, 2019, the JOA received communication from the IOC in which it was informed of the IAAF's advice that the ceremony could not be facilitated at the World Athletics Championships.

 

  1. The Olympians were accordingly advised and, following discussions with Novlene Williams-Mills, Rosemarie White and Bobbygaye Wilkins, Novlene Williams-Mills (who from representations held herself out to be the spokesperson) suggested either a Diamond League event during August or September or the IAAF Gala scheduled for later in the year both of which would be convenient to the JOA.

 

  1. On June 25, 2016, the JOA requested the IOC to give consideration to the proposed events for the ceremony. However, on July 1, 2019 the IOC advised that the IAAF could only accommodate the ceremony during the London edition of the Diamond League Meets which was scheduled to take place on July 20 and 21, 2019.

 

  1. The information was relayed by the JOA to the Olympians the same day for their review and decision and simultaneously they were advised to take into consideration the fact that the event being only three weeks away, there may be logistic challenges particularly in view of firstly, the fact that persons including some Olympians and their allowed guests required visas and, secondly, the imminent games commitments and preparation requirements of the JOA which may very well preclude attendance.

 

  1. All Olympians with the exception of Shericka Williams (who preferred the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games) notwithstanding confirmed on July 3 their decision in favour of the London Diamond League Meet scheduled for July 20 and 21. Ms. Williams eventually agreed and, with the consent of all Olympians, the JOA informed the IOC that same day of their decision.

 

  1. In keeping with the advice of the IOC, each Olympian was allowed two accompany guests to the ceremony. Accordingly, the number of persons in the party totaled eighteen and of this number, nine persons (three athletes and six guests) required UK visas.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. The JOA assisted all nine persons in applying for visas which entailed completion by the JOA of the relevant application forms at the request of the Olympians, payment of visa fees, payment of the airfare for two athletes and one guest to come to Jamaica for the visa appointments, hotel accommodation for one overseas athletes and a guest, personal delivery of copies of application forms and letters to the Olympians' homes in Kingston and the JOA's interface with the British High Commission in expediting the visa process. Total payments by the JOA exceeded one million dollars.

 

  1. The JOA, at all material times, stated in emails and telephone conversations  to the Olympians the advice of the IOC that the IOC would be responsible for flight arrangements to and from the event as well as hotel accommodation in London and that the IOC would liaise with the IAAF regarding transportation and event logistics during their stay in London.

 

  1. On July 18, 2019, the JOA received from the IOC the logistic arrangements which were conveyed to the Olympians on the morning of July 19, 2019.The JOA reiterates that matters relating to the on the day ceremonial arrangements were not in the JOA's remit.

 

  1. Throughout the treatment of matters, the JOA constantly kept the  Olympians advised and updated every step of the way by copious emails, telephone calls and instant messaging and devoted considerable time (often in the wee hours of the morning) in completing visa applications online for the Olympians and guests, in interfacing with the Olympians (including ceremonial attire) and in communicating with the IOC regarding arrangements.

 

  1. The JOA is obliged, given the attributed statements, to place on record that Mrs. Novlene Willliams-Mills, during the planning process, tendered an apology to the JOA for inappropriate conduct and mis-conceived concerns articulated by her and not shared by others. 

 

 

 

  1. From the very inception, the JOA offered the Olympians congratulations on their elevation to the silver medal position and, upon confirmation of the medal reallocation ceremony in London, expressed an apology for absence, given primarily its prior commitments and obligations respecting the 2019 Lima Pan American Games.

 

  1. The JOA is further obliged to again place on record that, subsequent to the publication of the article by Sportmax, it received thank you notes and emails from Shereefa LLoyd and her Nephew, Rosemarie Whyte, Bobbygaye Wilkins and Christine Day and is consequently appreciative of their kind recognition of its efforts.

 

  1. The JOA always celebrates with our athletes and commends them on their well-deserved achievements personally and on behalf of country and continues to be inspired by the principles of integrity, honesty, equity and fair play in the discharge of its national obligations to, and dealings with, its stakeholders.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Kelly-Ann Baptiste will be back at the IAAF World Championships of Athletics after finishing second at her national trials behind the dominance of Michelle Lee-Ahye.

Lee-Ahye won the 100-metre final at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in 11.18 seconds, ahead of Baptiste 11.22.

The times were not very fast and Lee-Ahye pointed to intermittent rain as one of the problems facing the sprinters, but was happy she continued to win in her native country, running to her fourth national title.

Lee-Ahye has been overcoming personal issues with a split from her wife making the news worldwide under the cloud of violence and infedility. 

In addition, the length of the season with the IAAF World Championships of Athletics all the way in September, means running fast now has been difficult.

“For me it is a little difficult because it is a long season and so you’ve got to stretch your programme but this is not too bad right now,” said Lee-Ahye.

Kamaria Durant was good enough for third in the final with her 11.30 seconds, while Semoy Hackett was disappointing in fourth, clocking 11.43 seconds.

One notable absence was Khalifa St Fort, who recently parted ways with her coach, Olympic silver medallist, Ato Boldon.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Machel Cedenio was in inspiring form as the second day of the NGC/NAAATT National Open Champs came to a close at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in that country on Saturday.

Running in the final of the 400 metres, Cedenio brought back glimpses of his old self, smiting the field to clock 44.52, more than a second faster than his closest rival.

Second in the one-lap event was Dwight St Hillare, who stopped the clock in 46.08, while Darren Alfred was good enough for third with his 46.63.

According to Cedenio, he isn’t running very fast just yet and instead is working on getting stronger, bearing in mind the length of the season with the World Championships all the way in September.

“I’m enjoying the process,” he said in a post-race interview with SportsMax’s Ricardo Chambers.

According to Cedenio, preparation for this season is a little more difficult because it is longer and therefore his coach has had to tweak the process in ways that make things, in a word, interesting.

“It is difficult because you’ve got to fluctuate a lot of things in training. Normally we would be doing faster stuff, but at this time he has been running me for strength,” said Cedenio.

Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Gold medallist, Keshorn Walcott will likely not be a part of the country’s team to the IAAF World Championships of Athletics after fouling out at his National Trials on Saturday.

Walcott, in a field of just three, including young Tyriq Horsford and Shakeil Waithe, did manage to throw 79.98 metres as well as 77.68, which would have given him victory with the best other throw being 78.97.

However, it is Waithe who can claim national championship honours after Walcott was adjudged to have broken some rule or other and registered as a disqualification.

Horsford threw 71.67 metres for second place.

While the reason for the disqualification isn’t clear, there is the suggestion that Walcott left the competition area for too long and fell prey to rule 180.19 “Absence during Competition”.

Also quoted on the results sheet was rule 142.2, “The eligibility of an athlete to compete outside of his country”.

Walcott is the countries reigning national record holder at 90.16 metres and the trials record holder at 84.96 metres.

The results are not a done deal though as there is to be a jury of appeal hearing today.

Walcott won gold at the Olympics for Trinidad and Tobago in 2012 and bronze in 2016.

The Jamaica Olympic Association has sought to clear up suggestions it neglected to pay full respsect to six Jamaican Olympians who collected upgraded silver medals during the Mueller Anniversary Games in London last week.

The six, who were having bronze medals from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympics upgraded, had voiced disappointment that there were no Jamaican officials to share what was a proud moment for them.

According to the JOA though, every effort was made to be present and the presence of the girls at the ceremony in London, had much to do with its efforts to ensure the event took place at a time convenient to the athletes.

“We didn’t have a representative from Jamaica, from the JOA, no one. I feel disappointed,” Novlene Williams-Mills had said after the occasion.

Williams-Mills, along with Shereefa Lloyd, Shericka Williams, Rosemarie Whyte-Robinson, and Bobby-Gaye Wilkins collected silver medals for the mile relay in 2008 while Christine Day, Lloyd, Whyte-Robinson, Williams and Williams-Mills, collected silver medals for 2012.

“For many years I represented Jamaica at the highest level. I have represented Jamaica at four Olympics at the highest level, World Championships at the highest level. I’ve made multiple Jamaica teams and for not one person from the JOA or in sports was able to make sure everything went smoothly and to ensure that we were taken care of was really disappointing.”

According to the the Olympic body, however, upon being informed of the medal ceremony, they entered into discussions with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) about scheduling a convenient date for all stakeholders.

Despite those efforts, however, the JOA was not able to send representatives because of prior commitments to the 2019 Pan America Games in Lima, Peru.

The challenge in being able to attend, the JOA said, was relayed to the athletes but that all preparations for a smooth medal ceremony, inclusive of accommodation and airtravel had been handled by the International Olympic Committee.

“They were advised to take into consideration the fact that the event being only three weeks away, there may be logistic challenges, particularly in view of firstly, the fact that persons including some Olympians and their allowed guests required visas and, secondly, the imminent games commitments and preparation requirements of the JOA which may very well preclude attendance,” the body said in a statement on Friday.

The body was also quick to point out that the view that the athletes were not seen as priority was erroneous, and that it would always seek to commend the athletes on their achievements.

 

With regard to the arrangements being made, the JOA said the Olympians were informed that the IOC would be responsible for flight arrangements to and from the event, as well as hotel accommodations and that the IOC would liaise with the IAAF regarding transportation and event logistics.

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