Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 31st 2014 Contents A68
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Thursday, July 31, 2014
The wait is over. And yes, at
these Commonwealth Games
in Glasgow, both wait and
weight were applicable to the
mood in and among the T&T
Notwithstanding, that there
was an international cheese con-
test taking place in Cheshire that
had the interest of many involved
in catering. It was no worry for
many journalists at the free
cheese tasting counters at some
I am not a cheese man so that
did not disturb me, even though
just as in the Commonwealth
Games, there were various
awards up for grabs during the
three-day contest. There were
some interesting cheese colours
that could fool many into think-
ing that cheese was actually
A world record entry of 4,400
cheese types from over 26 coun-
tries participated, but unfortu-
nately there was no representation
from the Caribbean. With a
straight face, I asked the young
and attractive blond promoting
the event for the reason.
She looked perplexed and
reached for her phone but I
stopped her and moved on.
She wanted to make conver-
sation but time was not on my
side. Despite her looks, I had a
job to do and needed to remain
After all, I was off to the triple
jump, where Ayana Alexander
produced a sterling effort to cap-
ture our first medal, and while
the colour was bronze, just like
the cheese contest elsewhere, this
was not about looks but rather
about the taste. The success tast-
ed really good. It was sweet for
all of T&T, from fellow athletes
to supporters, to the management
and even the media.
Once the result was known,
my media colleagues Rachael
King and Tony Lee both looked
to the heavens and smiled. I had
already done the same. My prayer
for a better meal coincided with
thoughts of a long overdue medal
for team T&T.
It's always so tough when we
have to look around and witness
the Jamaica media celebrating
success after success. Sometimes,
you want to shut them up, but
how do you do that when their
athletes just continue to win
medal after medal, and in this
instance, without their Bolt.
This feeling was similar to the
one experienced by Alexander
when she went in desperate
search of a national flag in 2010
after she won silver in New Delhi.
She did not have the same dif-
ficulties this time.
Watching our flag is mesmer-
izing. It transmits a positive mes-
sage of passion, power and hon-
Prior to Alexander's bronze, it
felt like a weight was hanging
over the T&T team. It was as if
everyone forgot how to smile but
the young lady jumped and
started the T&T medal motor
She did not have things easy
but kept faith and maintained
her will to succeed. There is an
easiness to have her say on
important topics which she elo-
quently explains are critical to
her future success.
I sense she is not only talented
but also intelligent and wise on
the qualities necessary for growth.
As I compared the interviews, I
have watched daily with the win-
ners from Scotland, Wales or
England, there is little doubt that
Alexander's poise and spirit is
equal or superior to most.
Now that one Alexander has
delivered, we wait in anticipation,
filled with positive expectation
to witness if another Alexander,
lightweight boxer Michael, can
also deliver a surprise to the
As she stood on the podium
under the bright lights of Glas-
gow, Ayanna Alexander smiled
and looked so happy and con-
tented. It was yet another symbol
of the remarkable beauty that is
the region, that is T&T, that is
Thanks to Queen Alexander,
the wait is over and of course,
the weight has been lifted from
the T&T camp.
GLASGOW - Grenada s Kirani James added another
gold medal to his collection with a scintillating victory
in the 400m final at the Commonwealth Games yes-
James powered to the finishing line in a Games record
time of 44.24s to add Commonwealth gold to his Olympic
and World Championship triumphs.
Running out of lane six, the Grenadian quickly nar-
rowed the gap on his two rivals ahead and held off a
challenge from Wayde van Niekerk of South Africa head-
ing into the home straight.
"I am happy for the country and this win is for every-
one back home," declared James in an interview with
"Wayde van Niekerk pushed me hard and I had to
stay composed. I stayed relaxed and in control. The
crowd in Glasgow here have been brilliant and the have
cancelled out the weather here!"
Van Niekerk secured second spot in 44.68 secs while
Trinidad and Tobago's Lalonde Gordon, claimed the
bronze medal in 44.78.
James ran a conservative 200m before kicking into
gear round the bend.
Van Niekerk seemed on the verge of piping him down
the straight but James found another burst to smash a
new Games record in the process.
"The race wasn't as fast as it looked but Kirani James
took real charge of things. It was a great effort from
Wayde van Niekerek who ran the 200m prelims this
morning," said analyst Michael Johnson.
"Maybe if he hadn't have done that he could have
got that bit closer to James and pushed him all the way
to the line."
Sports Minister Anil Roberts has praised the
efforts of T&T s latest Commonwealth Games
medallists, Cleopatra Borel and Lalonde Gordon,
following their outstanding performances in
Glasgow, Scotland, yesterday.
Borel won silver in the shotput while Gordon
finished third in the 400 metres.
The performances comes on the heels of a bronze
medal for Ayanna Alexander in the triple jump on
Roberts said yesterday proved to be T&T's most
successful day at the competition with world class
performances from both athletes. He said: "Cleo's
silver medal is testament to her years of experience
and success and is a fitting way to end her Glasgow
campaign. With her usual poise and grace she,
once again, makes T&T a contender on the field
events stage. Lalonde's strong performance and
third medal win comes as no surprise and I am
sure we can expect even greater things from this
talented Tobagonian. As evidenced by the views
of the overseas commentators, he is now a house-
hold name in the track and field world and is cer-
tainly a force to be reckoned with, especially with
this season's best time."
The Minister continued, "I must also commend
Kirani James of Grenada who came from a dis-
appointing World Championships in 2013 to com-
fortably win this 400m race and set a new games
record. Caribbean nations have shown their athletic
prowess in Glasgow and the world is again taking
GLASGOW --- Athletics Australia has suspended
its head coach Eric Hollingsworth after he released
an unauthorised statement criticising Olympic
hurdles champion Sally Pearson for not attending
the team s pre-Glasgow training camp.
Pearson, who won gold in the 100-metre hurdles
at the London Olympics and the 2011 world cham-
pionships, is due to open the defense of her Com-
monwealth title today.
Athletics Australia President David Grace said in
a statement yesterday that Hollingsworth acted
without the authority of AA and in contravention
of the "specific instructions of the chief executive
officer." He has been suspended without pay pending
further action when the AA board can meet to con-
sider the matter.
"Athletics Australia is bitterly disappointed that
Eric Hollingsworth has chosen to make a statement
to the media when our focus should be on wholly
on supporting our athletes' performance," Grace
Hollingsworth released a statement earlier defend-
ing his decision to cut Pearson's funding for her
Commonwealth Games preparations after she opted
not to attend the athletics team's training camp at
"What's lost here is she's the team captain and
there's a reasonable expectation she'd be in the
camp ahead of something as major as the Com-
monwealth Games," he said in the statement. "Her
no-show sets a bad example to the entire national
Australian media reported that Pearson has refused
to speak to Hollingsworth since they clashed at
Sopot, Poland after the World Indoor Champi-
onships in March, where the coach was critical of
her silver medal-winning performance.
Hollingsworth's ongoing role with the games
team will be determined by the Australian Com-
monwealth Games Association, which is responsible
for the team in Glasgow.
Winner of the men's 400m final Kirani James, left, from Grenada celebrating
after winning at Hampden Park Stadium during the Commonwealth Games
Glasgow 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland, yesterday. AP PHOTO
and ending waits
James cruises to
new CG record
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