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Regional nod for U-15 team

Justin Marville

Regional nod for U-15 team

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LOOKS LIKE BARBADOS BASKETBALL will be sending a team to a regional tournament after all.
A very young team.
Forget the senior championships, Barbados have their eyes on contesting next year’s junior tournament, as Barbados Amateur Basketball Association (BABA) president Derrick Garrett reiterated his body’s commitment to participating in the 2012 Under-15 event.
Garrett restated those intentions during Thursday’s opening ceremony of the Co-operators General Insurance Secondary Schools’ Competition just one week after failing to make the payment deadline for this year’s Caribbean Basketball Confederation’s senior championships in the Bahamas.
“We will utilise this tournament as one of the means of assessing players for the Caribbean Basketball Confederation’s Under-15 Tournament scheduled for next year,” said Garrett.
“We see them as part of our five-year development plan and we’re looking forward to seeing them progress so that the future of basketball is secure.
“We are also looking forward to the day when a tournament for primary schools is undertaken and we are looking at it as part of our developmental plan,” he added.
Just last week, the BABA was forced to make the decision of skipping the senior regional tournament for the first time in Barbados’ history after the association failed to raise the necessary $90 000 to send both a men’s and women’s team.T
his came after the newly-elected president initially proposed to rebuild the struggling national programme by bolstering the men’s squad with several players under the age of 25.
But the decision was taken out of Garrett’s hands when it was discovered that the previous executive did not include a budget for the upcoming tour in their budgetary proposal to the Barbados Olympic Association for the 2011 season.
However, the ultramarine and gold haven’t been doing well in recent times anyway, having finished fifth in 2006 before garnering two successive sixth spots at the 2007 and 2009 men’s tournaments.
The disappointing finishes have now compelled the new executive council to focus on rebuilding through the defunct junior programme, which hasn’t contested a junior event since the boys came seventh at the CBC Under-19 Championships six years ago.
Currently, the BABA is in the process of overhauling the entire national structure, with the view of having the junior and senior squads in a year-long training programme for the next five years.