Trinidad and Tobago to host 2023 Commonwealth Youth Games

By Sports Desk September 25, 2022

Trinidad and Tobago will host the seventh Commonwealth Youth Games in August 2023.

After Belfast lost the right to host the Commonwealth Youth Games, the Trinidad and Tobago Commonwealth Games Association, in August 2018, expressed its interest to the Commonwealth Games Federation and subsequently submitted an official bid.

The Games will be held from August 4 to 11.

The logo design, a fingerprint, has been launched. The fingerprint symbolizes the digital innovation age and the flexibility and ease of communication citizens of the Commonwealth show daily when using phones, computers and tablets to find and gather information with just a touch of a finger.

The Trinidad and Tobago bid presentation team to the CGF Executive Board meeting in Birmingham were TTCGA President Brian Lewis and secretary general, Annette Knott. The bid proposal Trinbago 2021 was conceptualised and written by Kwanieze John, Chanelle Young and Rheeza Grant. Cudjoe led the efforts to garner the support of Prime Minister Keith Rowley and her Cabinet colleagues.

 Diane Henderson, the first woman to hold the post of Trinidad and Tobago Commonwealth Games Association (TTCGA) and Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee President, Trinidad and Tobago Minister of Sport and Community Development, the Honourable Shamfa Cudjoe, and Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) President Dame Louise Martin signed the Host Country Contract at the National Aquatic Centre in Balmain, Couva on August 26.

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  • Sportsmax to revive Caribbean High School Football Championship in January 2023 Sportsmax to revive Caribbean High School Football Championship in January 2023

    SportsMax is to re-introduce the staging of the Caribbean High School Football Championship between high school teams from Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica.

    The competition will see St. Benedict and Fatima College of the Secondary School Football League (SSFL) in Trinidad and the two finalists from the Olivier Shield in the Inter-School Secondary Sports Association School Boy Football (ISSA SBF) competing for the coveted trophy in Kingston, Jamaica.

    The Caribbean High School Football Championship will be held in January 2023, with qualifying matches to be played on January 13.

    The action concludes on January 15 with the finals, where the teams with the most points or best goal average, compete for the championship title and the grand prize of US$10,000, courtesy of SportsMax.

    “I am extremely happy about the opportunity to bring the regional giants of Caribbean School Boy Football from the SSFL in Trinidad and from ISSA in Jamaica to a Caribbean final to see who will take home the trophy of the SBF Champions of the Caribbean,” said Nicolas Matthews, CEO of SportsMax.

    “As the leading sports content broadcaster and production house in the Caribbean, SportsMax will create a robust and extensive promotion for the Caribbean High School Football Championship. We will cover traditional and digital media in a calculated effort to have Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago’s schoolboy football achievements celebrated in the 60th year of their countries Independence, pushing the mantra that we are ONE Caribbean!”

    President of the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association, Keith Wellington was equally excited about the return of the competition.

     “ISSA is happy to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Independence of Jamaica and Trinidad through this match-up of our top schoolboy football teams,” he said.

    “Schoolboy football has been a favourite activity of both nations and this opportunity for regional interaction amongst our youths is priceless!”

    General Manager of Tiger Tanks Denis Latif title sponsors of the SSFL said he is keen on seeing how the competition plays out between the best schoolboy teams from both countries.

     “Tiger Tanks are pleased to be a part of the 'rekindling' of the rivalry between Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago,” he said.

    “With both nations celebrating special anniversaries in 2022, it is only fitting that this is the beginning of many other things to come. Both countries, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago, have always been vying for top honours in the Caribbean and with our football now getting back on stream I am very eager to see the hunger on the field.”

    With extensive coverage on multiple platforms, football fans will be able to access exciting football throughout the Caribbean and in the Diaspora through a wide array of broadcast platforms including SportsMax, SportsMax2, the SportsMax App and the SportsMax YouTube channel, sister station CEEN TV which broadcasts to the United States, United Kingdom and Canada and also on the web at www.ceen.tv.

    Viewers in the Diaspora will also be able to tune in on what promises to be a thrilling display of skill, school camaraderie and country pride.

    “SportsMax has broadcast both leagues over the last five years and we have seen the birth of so many class footballers, many of whom have gone on to the national and international stage,” said Matthews.

    “This final playoff is meant to endorse regional sports integration and also to reward our SBF athletes through their schools for the excellent work they have put in throughout the season. We are looking to organizing this playoff annually and to rotate it across countries and, in the long term, look to add other countries to be a part of the Caribbean play-off.”

    The initiative also aims to create synergy in sports at the high school level between arguably the two most successful football nations in the English-speaking Caribbean - Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago – as well as increasing interest and viewership of the sport and athletes while exposing them to meaningful opportunities from all stakeholders, scouts, schools, clubs, the Diaspora and alumni communities.

    “I am tremendously elated to be part of the re-emergence of the Caribbean High School Football Championship between ISSA and SSFL,” said SSFL President Merere Gonzales.

    “Providing such a crucial platform for our student-athletes would certainly aid in the continued development and advancement of our youths in the region, allowing them, the opportunity to source football scholarships or professional contracts.” 

    The Caribbean High School Football Championship is slated to be an annual event and with the support of the high school associations and the sports ministries from both countries, we foresee the rise of the most-anticipated event in the youth sports calendar. 

    “SportsMax will continue its efforts to bring the Caribbean together through sports and entertainment and ensure that athletes and viewers in the Caribbean continue to see the best talents and with the best seats from the Home of Champions,” Matthews said.

    “We implore you to show country pride as we bring to you a synergy like no other.”

     

  • T&T two-man bobsleigh team makes historic medal run at North American Cup T&T two-man bobsleigh team makes historic medal run at North American Cup

    The Trinidad and Tobago bobsleigh team of Axel Brown and Shakeel John created history for that country at the North American Cup when they finished fourth in the two-man bobsleigh event in Park City, Utah.

    They are also now the second Caribbean country to win medals at the North American Cup as Jamaica has won multiple events and medals from the women monobob, two-woman and two-man bobsled events dating back to the 1990s.

    In the North American Cup the first six places win medals and Brown and John clocked a combined time of 1:38.24 (48.81/49.43) to finish behind Canada (1:38.11), USA (1:37.78) and the winning Korean team (1:37.59).

    It was a major moment in the sport’s history in the twin-island republic athletes.

     “We’re all coming to terms with the fact that we just made history,” Brown told Newsday.

    “Of course, we wanted to be in the top three, but to be racing against the biggest nations in our sport and challenging them on the ice (is great). I can’t wait to see what this team can continue to achieve.”

    The history-making team races again Tuesday, November 22 and Wednesday, November 23.

  • Trinidadian gymnast Thema Williams opens gym for children Trinidadian gymnast Thema Williams opens gym for children

    Former Trinidad and Tobago gymnast Thema Williams has opened a gym intended to be a safe space for all-rounded childhood athletic development.

    The talented gymnast said her aim is to “create initiatives that foster teamwork through sport and culture.”

    “We envision an environment in sport built on the pillars of accountability, equity, integrity, knowledge and transparency,” she in an interview with T&T newspaper Newsday.

    “I started by offering private gymnastics classes during the pandemic, and word quickly spread throughout a network of reputable people. Before I knew it, I had five clients weekly.”

    She has poured a lot of sweat into making her idea into reality even making her own equipment. She revealed that she made a balance beam, her first, from wood from her home storage unit and used foam and glue to fashion mats.

    The demand for her teaching was so great that she had more than 100 students enrolled by the end of 2021, which then prompted her decision to open a gym.

    In 2018, Williams won a court battle against the Trinidad and Tobago Gymnastics Federation that was deemed to have discriminated against the gymnast when they withdrew her from the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil. In her place, the TTGF selected Canadian-born gymnast Marisa Dick.

    She was awarded damages amounting to more than $TT200,000. However, the TTGF did not turn over the cash until a few weeks ago when a high court judge ordered Republic Bank where the gymnastics federation held an account, to cut a cheque for more than $230,000 to pay the athlete.

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