Garrett still head of basketball body
THE BALL HAS BOUNCED decisively in Derrick Garrett’s favour again.
Call it one big vote of confidence for local basketball’s floor general after the Barbados Amateur Basketball Association’s incumbent president was predictably returned unopposed during Tuesday’s general elections at the Wildey Gym.
It was the rather unsurprising turn of events for an expectedly low-key annual general meeting that saw Garrett unchallenged for the top spot for the second time after he also ran unopposed at his first election in 2011.
“This just shows that the clubs and general membership are happy with the direction we took over the last three years so I’m really happy with this vote of confidence,” explained the Guardian General insurance manager who also previously served as the organising secretary.
“But that doesn’t mean we rest on our laurels because we still have to look at the programmes we are doing and we will continue with the restructuring of the association.
“Plus I believe basketball really must forge a path into the primary schools because if we get kids playing at that age it will help to build the structure that we are looking at. Secondly, I want to return our status to the level it was before at the Caribbean Basketball Championships where we started winning titles again,” he added.
The returns proved a strong show of support for not just Garrett, but many of his deputies, as honorary secretary Charlene Leacock was also returned unopposed while incumbent second vice president Charles Griffith ran unchallenged for the first vice president post.
This comes in response to an executive that has been widely credited for the sport’s big turnaround in recent years following the council’s renewed focus on coaching development and the redevelopment of a fading national programme.
If there was a surprise surrounding the night’s events it probably came when Lakers head coach Francis Williams returned from a seven-year absence on council to upend incumbent first vice president Mark Harding by 13 votes to four for the post of second vice president.
His somewhat sudden return didn’t come as a total shock, though, as there were rumours involving his name, which had been big in local basketball circles after Williams served as both a national player and assistant coach while sitting on the Caribbean Basketball Confederation board as a vice president of marketing.
“I am not sure I ever left, to be honest,” said Williams of his decision to seek a spot on the executive again.
“But I felt since I left that different executives have had challenges due to inexperience and if I can help the situation I could as well do so from the inside. It all depends on how Derrick feels he can best use my experience.”
Despite the council’s widely-accredited success, organising secretary Richard Waldron, treasurer Sophia Thorpe and public relations officer Sydney Robertson all refused to seek re-election and were replaced by Reco Watson, Aisha Olton and one-time national guard Celia Collymore, respectively.
Dexter Griffith then lost his bid to return as assistant secretary treasurer when he was defeated by former Premier League MVP Peter Alleyne by ten votes to seven.
Zahir Motara and Reynold Layne were still able to retain their positions as floor members after the new constitution reduced those numbers from four to two. The new executive isn’t quite complete as the Barbados Basketball Officials Association and the coaches’ association have yet to name their one obligatory member to serve on that council.