St. John’s Antigua- Officials from the National Olympic Association met with the High Commissioner to the UK, HE Carl Roberts on Monday, along with representatives from the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism office and members of the Antigua & Barbuda Athletic Association.
President of the Olympic association, Senator Paul “Chet” Greene described the meeting as very productive.
Greene said from the discussions held, they are to solicit definitive programme(s) to source technical and other support from Antigua & Barbuda partners.
Accompanying Greene were First Vice President Wilbur Harrigan and Secretary General Cliff Williams.
Roberts was fullsome in his commendations of the Olympic officials and the athletes representing the country.
He encouraged the athletes to give of their all in representing the country and highlighted the unique opportunity presented by the Olympic Games.
“It is a rare privilege and opportunity to participate in the Olympics and to be a member of that elite group called Olympians,“ he said.
Greene thanked the High Commissioner for affording the opportunity to himself and his delegation to meet to shed light on Antigua & Barbuda’s participation at the Games, and expressed gratitude to the Antigua & Barbuda diaspora community for embracing the team and for committing to work with the Olympic association and other sport organisations at home to the benefit of the nation and athletes.
An event with Team Antigua & Barbuda will be held on August 9.
Later on Monday, Minister of Tourism John Maginley, in England for the funeral of his sister, toured the Olympic Village and had lunch with Team Antigua & Barbuda.
After lunch, the minister met with the athletes in the office provided for the Antigua & Barbuda delegation in the Athletes Village and gave what can only be described as a “heart to heart“ motivational speech which highlighted appreciation for their efforts at representing the twin-island state.
Maginley encouraged them to seize the unique opportunity presented by participation in the Games and their status as ambassadors and role models.
The MP threw out a challenge to national 100m sensation, Daniel Bailey, to aim at bettering his Beijing Olympics performance and to the Olympic association to strive for representation from the sister island of Barbuda by the 2016 Games.
Post meeting interviews with the athletes and officials present confirmed satisfaction and deemed the minister‘s visit beneficial and most welcome.
Greene thanked the minister who he deemed imminently qualified to address the athletes, having himself donned the national colours and was aware of the stresses, anxiety, expectations and demands placed on athletes.
The Olympic boss presented the minister with replica jerseys of Team Antigua & Barbuda 2012 Olympics.
On Tuesday, Finance Minister Harold Lovell, who is on vacation, also paid a visit to the athletes.