Jamaicans charged to lift regional game
Shayne Fairman, Gleaner Writer
Robert Richards is confident that local representatives can lift the English-speaking Caribbean's playing standards to the level of their counterparts in Spanish-speaking countries regionally.
"Jamaica, we the stakeholders in badminton are looking to lead the way in building badminton throughout the region," Richards, the Jamaica Badminton Association (JBA) president, told The Gleaner. "The Badminton World Federation (BWF) is aiming to have the game introduced and developed in all countries throughout the Pan American region. Jamaica will be doing its part to improve the sport."
The president believes badminton is played at a higher level in the Spanish-speaking Caribbean countries but admits Jamaica and the other English-speaking countries have their part to play in strengthening the sport.
"In an effort to have the programme developed and grown in English-speaking countries, Jamaica has been asked to lead the way by the Pan-American Badminton Confederation (PABCO)," Richards noted.
"One of our long-serving members of the JBA, past vice-president Audley Astwood, left the island (Saturday) last week to conduct a shuttle time badminton course in St Lucia."
Richards added that Astwood is one of four certified shuttle time (badminton) tutors locally. Gregory Wong, who previously conducted training in Trinidad, Shaun Forrester, who conducted sessions in Suriname, and national female player, Geordine Henry are tutors.
Richards also noted that the JBA would be conducting its second shuttle time training within the next few weeks in collaboration with Institute of Sports (INSPORTS).
Shuttle time is a revolutionary method to grow the sport and keep it relevant. The Badminton World Federation's (BWF) official website states the programme is designed to help teachers and coaches develop the skills, knowledge, and confidence to plan and deliver safe and fun badminton lessons to children and youth.