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Story Highlights

  • Ten athletes have been selected to participate in the 5th Commonwealth Youth Games, to be held from Sept ember 5-11 in the Pacific island of Samoa.
  • The youngsters will be competing in two disciplines - eight in track and field and two in swimming.
  • The team was announced during a press conference, held at the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) headquarters in Kingston, on August 18.

Ten athletes have been selected to participate in the 5th Commonwealth Youth Games, to be held from Sept ember 5-11 in the Pacific island of Samoa.

The youngsters will be competing in two disciplines – eight in track and field and two in swimming.

The team was announced during a press conference, held at the Jamaica Olympic Association (JOA) headquarters in Kingston, on August 18.

In his comments, President of the JOA, Hon. Michael Fennel, noted that the athletes are currently in a camp at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus.

“There are several reasons for the camp, other than the normal reason for getting everybody to focus. The event is taking place outside of the normal school timetable and therefore we have to put them back into a competitive environment, and we need that preparation before we leave for Samoa,” Mr. Fennel said.

He noted that while the delegation comprises excellent athletes, the youth commonwealth games are more than just a competition.

“I want to emphasize that, as it is how you develop the whole person and that is why the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) interactive workshops will be held, to help them develop their life skills, knowledge and information about other things, although the primary focus is on the field of play,” Mr. Fennel said.

In the meantime, Minister with responsibility for Sport, Hon. Natalie Neita Headley,  said that while the country has a high level of expectation for the athletes, she reminded the representatives that “your best is always going to be good enough for us here in Jamaica.”

“If you give of your best, if you remain disciplined, focused and dope free, then we will be happy to always have you representing Jamaica. So, as you go off, remember these things,” Mrs. Neita Headley said.

She also thanked the JOA for providing the opportunity for the athletes to participate in these events.

“This is where it begins and this is how we get to the place where we can have elite athletes. So, take this journey seriously, because your careers depend on it, and your lives depend on it,” the Minister said.