Sun | Dec 4, 2016

Jaheel's final call

Published:Tuesday | December 30, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Jaheel Hyde of Wolmer's Boys' in full flight on his way to winning the Class One 110 metres hurdles final on the final day of Champs 2014. - File
Hyde, representing Wolmer's Boys' in the ISSA/LIME 2014 Manning Cup schoolboy football competition. - File
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Life-changing decisions need focus, consultation and time spent to achieve the desired result

Foster's Fairplay
harbours no doubt that Team Jaheel Hyde fully extended itself in applying all these and more in saying "the future will be devoted to track and field for this frighteningly obvious, amazing talent".

The Wolmerian's 2014 schoolboy football season was replete with brilliant moments, selecting the ultimate Walker Cup champions, St George's College, for some incisive runs and clinical strikes.

Despite those thrills, that 400 metres hurdles gold in 49.29 seconds at the Eugene, Oregon International Association of Athletics Associations World Junior Championships in Athletics (WJC), must have been at the crux of the final verdict.

The ease with which it was executed - the reserve tank, untouched - would have removed all reasonable doubt.

Juggling two sports

This columnist has written copiously on Hyde's athletic gifts and the "road not to be taken", as one tries to predict his progress in his sport of popular choice.

It is time to add to the bouquets thrown at the young man by saying what some might have overlooked.

He has spent the past few years doing two sports at the national youth/junior level. A last trip to the pinnacle of global track and field - WJC 2015 (Under-20 competition) beckons.

This would mean that both disciplines would have suffered from a shortfall in intense preparation given the time and effort sharing.

So, given a more professional and concentrated approach to what champions-in-the-making do, "watch out world!!"

The son of a 'Teacher'-man is on the threshold of greatness. This is on, once he carries the blessings of good health, proper guidance, astute mentorship and professional handling. Repeat (mom Angela and dad Lenworth Sr), this is not a job for a greenhorn who should "wet his/her feet" elsewhere.

Happily for those in his corner, he possesses copybook humility. It is a most welcome and essential attribute to promote the success envisaged. It is to be treasured and never to be tarnished.

The recent Michael Frater model is an unfortunate example, not to be duplicated by another of the Age Quod Agis mould.

Hyde's coach

In all this, Hyde's coach, the man who has put him on a path to stardom, seems to have been forgotten.

Wolmer's, not infrequently, signifies a transition to the Stephen Francis co-founded MVP Track Club. Maroon and Gold is the lather in which they wash. Whether the move happens or not, coach Patrick Harley at the Marescaux Road institution should not be sidelined.

Throughout the sport, those who got into the trenches, did the burdensome groundwork (no pun intended), are traditionally absent from the picture when the real cameras start rolling.

Harnessing talent

Staring in the face is the experience of father Gillie Russell, who partnered Gillian and her precocious early talent to four WJC gold medals (Most decorated junior athlete in history).

In the same pew is Olympian Pablo McNeil, who harnessed the breathtakingly awesome talent of the Usain Bolt phenomenon, escorting him to the brink of greatness.

The two, as told to this columnist, went to their ultimate end, the bitterness, a lasting one. Coach Harley needs to be spared a rehearsal of this humiliation.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Fellow Wolmerian Frater no-showed at a function in his honour and offered an excuse which did not withstand the truth test.

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