Foster’s Fairplay is, not at this juncture, concerned with rights or wrongs of the ongoing squabble as they pertain to the eligibility of the Ugandan athlete, Ari Rodgers, to participate in the ISSA-GraceKennedy Boys & Girls’ Championships next week. That aspect of the saga has been settled by the world-renowned event’s governing body, the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association with Rodgers’ school, Kingston College, coming out smiling. The grimace, however, is on the face of the other school realistically contending Champs supremacy, Calabar High, whose five-year winning streak is under the hammer of a Kingston College, hungry to latch on to a major trophy. This has led to a scenario that is threatening discord and disarray amongst the supporters of the two factions. As reggae artiste George Nooks sang in the 70’s, “Tribal War, wi nuh wan nuh more a dat.” The principals of both schools are not looking good in all of this, as the punches and counterpunches are in the public space. Someone needs to take the time to alert them to the importance of the role that they are being compensated to play. They need to be seen primarily as promoting the establishment and maintenance of discipline, good order and industry. As far as their public profile on extraneous matters such as the Rodgers affair is concerned, there is a tolerance limit that is on the verge of being exceeded. A boiling point has been reached In recent times, there are many acts of deviant behaviour among students, and some have led to disastrous outcomes. To address this, there have been initiatives like the appointment of guidance counsellors, Peace and Love in Schools (PALS) and the introduction of safety officers from the Jamaica Constabulary Force. Will it soon be necessary to institute similar moves to keep the principals at bay or away from each other’s throats? Foster’s Fairplay firmly believes that now is the appropriate time to advise the combatants that adversity does not change you adversity actually reveals who you are. Individuals holding high offices should conduct themselves with the highest degree of ethics. Airing their grievances on radio programmes is not the decent way, as it does not send the correct message. The ISSA rules, as they regard qualification to compete, are quite clear. One is hard-pressed to recall an occasion when their implementation has been mired in such controversy as in this matter regarding the Ugandan athlete. If the latest ruling can give rise to this type of confrontation that puts one school’s top administrator up in arms with his counterpart elsewhere, maybe it is time to design an alternative strategy. The fact that the students could attempt to justify their sometimes recalcitrant behaviour on the grounds of “Is the same thing Sir did on TV last night” provides just cause. Foster’s Fairplay suggests that disputes such as the on-going one should be discussed and settled by a designated body, far removed from the schools’ administration. The latter should be left to cater to the diverse demands of educating students and preparing them for the wider world. There can be no doubt that Champs is a blessing to be nurtured and cherished. However, it tends to bring out some disturbing traits in some of the persons involved in its structure and execution. When consulted by Foster’s Fairplay, a former Calabar athlete, coach Vaughn, now plying his trade conditioning athletes in Florida, USA, commented, “I have come to see that the championships is but a drop in the bucket of our life experience. Life is bigger than any Champs win. The adults in this should be ashamed of themselves.” Champs too sweet, take the bitterness elsewhere. – Feedback: Email – email@example.com
The country’s women cricketers and rugby players have also enjoyed notable success on the global stage in recent years, with Lord’s packed for England’s win against India last year in the Women’s World Cup final.Marzena Bogdanowicz, head of marketing and commercial for women’s football at the FA, told a panel in London discussing unlocking the potential of women in sport, that she had been struck by a story about a young girl who wanted to take drastic measures so she could play football.“I read on social media the other day this little girl came home and said to her mother ‘I want to be a boy mummy’ and this carried on for a whole week,” she said.“Then finally the mum realised actually the only reason she wanted to be a boy was because she wanted to play football.“The little girl managed to find a programme for football for girls. This is an instance where we can help the club change the perception it is OK for girls to play football.“It is just amazing that is still happening and we are slowly changing that. This girl is now playing for her local club, she is confident and bold and got new friends.”– ‘Marginalised’ –Bogdanowicz, in her role since 2017, said it was important to learn lessons from such cases.“It is really sad that she believed she had to be a boy to play football,” she said. “It almost made me cry. Perceptions, though, are those things you don’t need investment for.“They just need a sea change, an area where the media can help in delivering the message ‘it is OK for girls to play any sport they want’.”Alex Teasdale, senior growth projects manager at the Rugby Football Union, said women rugby players had faced hurdles in being accepted.“When I first started in this role five years ago we talked to women in the game about how they felt as part of a rugby club,” said Teasdale. “Many felt very marginalised.“An early example of that that sticks in my mind was at a particular club the women’s team could not have post-match teas as the television was in that room and the committee were watching something so they had to forego their opportunity of eating.”However, Teasdale said the tide had turned and women were now seen as part of the fabric of clubs as opposed to being a financial drain.Teasdale said the division of how many of either sex played the game was irrelevant.“At the end of the day we mark ourselves on the number of people playing, the number of teams and matches and it doesn’t matter whether they are men or women playing,” she said.“Clubs have really, really tapped into that and are understanding that now themselves.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000England celebrate a goal in their bronze medal match against Germany at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup © AFP/File / GEOFF ROBINSLONDON, United Kingdom, Apr 17 – A “sea change” in perceptions is needed to convince girls they can play any sport they want, says a Football Association official as interest in women’s sport soars.England’s women footballers reached the 2015 World Cup semi-finals and the same stage at last year’s European Championship — attracting a peak TV audience of four million people.