First-time Carifta head coach forced to play it safe
FIRST-TIME CARIFTA Games head coach Keilando Goburn is delighted with his team’s 78-medal performance at their recent Carifta Games in the Bahamas. However, Goburn says it was tough to get the athletes going after ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’...
FIRST-TIME CARIFTA Games head coach Keilando Goburn is delighted with his team’s 78-medal performance at their recent Carifta Games in the Bahamas. However, Goburn says it was tough to get the athletes going after ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships the previous week.
Speaking moments after the closing ceremony in Nassau, the St Jago High School girls’ team head coach recounted, “Last week, they were on a high and then to get them back to another high was extremely difficult. There was a lot of fatigue, a lot of niggles, so we had to spend a lot of time managing those niggles.”
With the Penn Relays around the corner and the Pan-Am Under-20 Championships just over the horizon in August, Goburn and his coaching colleagues played it safe. “We had to make some crucial decisions to pull some persons from events, you know, just to preserve them and to make sure they can finish their season healthy.”
Notably, under-20 100-metre champion Alana Reid stood down from the 200 metres, where she was a medal favourite.
“But you know, at the end of the day, I thought it was a triangular effort. From the athletes, coaching staff, and of course, the management team, and once again, well done Jamaica,” said Goburn.
The last day of the April 8-10 regional event started with a demonstration of Jamaica’s prowess in the sprint hurdles. Although the track was wet from heavy showers, Bryanna Davidson and Camoy Binger went 1-2 in the under-17 100 metres hurdles, with Alexis James and Asharria Ulett matching that result in the under-20 final. Kahiem Carby and Shakir Lewis took gold and silver in the under-17 110 metres hurdles and then Demario Prince and Shaquane Gordon crossed the line in first and third in the under-20 110 metres hurdles.
However, one of the Jamaicans was revealed to have false started after a protest was lodged. Initially, Prince’s gold medal had been taken away but on further review, it was revealed that Gordon was the guilty party.
Still, coach Goburn gave the powerful display a rave review.
“I thought the sprint hurdles set the tone for the final day. I mean the plan was for us to sweep the hurdles. The athletes were upbeat from the warm-up track. They knew the assignment, and they were willing to execute on the day, but at the end of the day, I think it was an all-round performance from Team Jamaica,” said the head coach.
According to Goburn, his team wasn’t bothered by the vocal home crowd.
“The Bahamians are very loud. They make a lot of noise,” he said.
“But we are accustomed to that from Kingston, so that didn’t deter us, to say the least.”
The former St Jago 400 metres runner was honoured to serve the black-green-and-gold at Carifta.
“I’ve been on multiple national duties, but this is my first time at the helm,” he said “It’s always a privilege to serve my country.”
Jamaica won 40 gold, 22 silver, and 16 bronze medals, with the hosts amassing 46 medals, 10 gold, 13 silver, and 22 bronze.