Two await Stadium all-clear
WITH?THE?National Stadium having hosted its first sporting meet of the year, officials from both the Barbados Football Association (BFA) and the Barbados Cycling Union (BCU) are hoping to soon utilize the venue as well.
After being closed for more than eight months to facilitate the re-laying of a new athletics track as well as renovations to the outfield, the new track was christened with the staging of the Barbados Olympians Classic track and field meet last weekend.
In an interview with MIDWEEK?SPORT yesterday, president of the BFA, Randy Harris, said he was eagerly awaiting the completion of repairs to the outfield.
He revealed that once the go-ahead was given, matches would return to the National Stadium.
“Once everything has been completed, we will use the Stadium for some of the bigger games, such as the knockout semi-finals and finals,” he said.
“For years spectators have preferred to come to the Stadium to watch football and I don’t think that anything has changed.
“It is still the No. 1 venue and I expect to have the big crowds that we are accustomed to once the go ahead has been given,” Harris added.
He noted that the current venue for Premier League matches, the Wildey AstroTurf, lacked adequate covering and seating.
Keith Yearwood, the president of the BCU, also said that he was keen to see action resume at the cycling track at the National Stadium.
No work was done to the cycling track during the renovations, but it was not used because of safety concerns.
“We are happy to see that the track is back in commission and are eagerly anticipating the opportunity to use the velodrome at the Stadium,” Yearwood said.
“We have been in contact with personnel from the National Sports Council and we expect to hear from them shortly as to when we can start back using the cycling track.
“Right now we know that one of their biggest priorities will be to clean the debris from off of the cycling track, so that it will be in pristine condition when it is finally reopened.”
Yearwood revealed that once the BCU was given the green light, it would first allow the cyclists the opportunity to train on the track.
This would be followed by the introduction of a track league, which would be used in preparation for the National Championships, slated to be held in the next two to three months.