The Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) said yesterday that Guyana will be represented by five athletes from three disciplines at the Islamic Sports Solidarity Federation (ISSF) Games in Palembang, Indonesia at month end.
According to GOA President KA Juman Yassin, Guyana will compete for the second time at the games which is held every four years among countries who are members of the Islamic Federation.
Leading the team will be Olympian Winston George who represented Guyana in the 400m at last year’s Olympic Games in London.
According to Yassin, the team which departs today will participate in athletics, karate and taekwondo. Yassin, who said that Guyana has been a member of Islamic Federation for a number of years, said he expected good performances from the athletes.
A total of 13 disciplines including swimming, tennis and football will be contested and Yassin informed that the three disciplines Guyana will be competing in were selected to give athletes from those disciplines exposure.
“It is another opportunity to give athletes exposure and I am happy that karate and taekwondo are involved. I am looking forward to good things from the team especially from Winston George,” the GOA President said.
According to Yassin, the cost per athlete/individual for the games is US$3715 and he said that the ISSF and the GOA will sponsor the cost of the team’s participation.
The Guyana team is expected to arrive in Palembang tomorrow.
Ramjeet Ramphal. Chef-de-Mission of the team is also optimistic of the locals producing good performances at the Games.
“I believe that we can bring home medals and gold medals too,” he said confidently.
The following athletes, George (200m. 400m). Alika Morgan (1500m, 5000m), Kawall Ramkiran (taekwondo-kyorugi under 58k), Nathalie Gibson (karate- individual kumite under 68kg). Patrick Cheeks (karate- individual kumite over 84kg/individual kata) were chosen by their respective Associations to attend the Games.
Yassin also disclosed that Seibert Blake of the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA) will depart these shores next week to attending a boxing course in Hungary. The course is expected to last for three months.
Blake in his brief remarks said he was grateful for the opportunity and assured that on his return he will impart the knowledge learnt to the younger boxers to aid in lifting the standard of the sport.
“It is a shot in the arm for the boxing association and I am happy for the opportunity and the support for boxing. I will ensure that I will share my knowledge with the youths.”
The GOA President also disclosed that one million dollars will be given to the Guyana Rugby Football Union. However, Yassin said that a criteria was proposed to the union and once that is approved the money will be available. “Guyana Olympic Association has been in discussion with the Guyana Rugby Union. We have committed one million dollars but they are still to work out the mechanics with Spencer Robinson and once they have worked it out and he said it is worked out, the funds will be available,” said Yassin.
Meanwhile, Leslie Black, Coach of Alika Morgan has been selected by the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) as Coach/Manager of the athletic team. Black, along with another member of the team departed yesterday for the games.