The 2012 OECS/ECCB Under-23 Netball Tournament is being held in Grenada and will see seven teams compete for the championship trophy. They are: Antigua and Barbuda, The Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Kitts, Saint Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines.
Defending champions, Team St Kitts, is in full gear to retain its hold on the title. Coach Mrs Avonel Julien, said the team, under the leadership of its new captain, Talissa Brown, is “determined and ready” to defend the coveted title, which it won for the first time in 2009.
Organizers and sponsors have welcomed the return of Team Montserrat to the tournament after an absence of over 17 years. Coach of the team, Ms Valerie Samuel, said that Montserrat had to abstain from the tournament due to the volcanic crisis. According to Ms Samuel, this is the first time this team will be participating in a regional tournament and that they are looking forward to making their mark.
For the past 22 years, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) has been demonstrating its commitment to promoting excellence in sports among the region’s young people through its sponsorship of the OECS/ECCB Under-23 Netball Tournament.
The ECCB has been the official sponsor of the tournament since 1991. The Bank’s contribution to this regional sporting event over the years demonstrates its commitment to the development of young minds through sports; its belief in the importance of sports to the social and physical development of the region’s young women; and the potential of the competition to promote the Bank’s vision of regional integration.
In 1999, the ECCB incorporated a personal development session into the OECS/ECCB Under-23 Netball Tournament. The session is designed to enhance the interpersonal and professional skills of the netballers. This year, financial consultant, Mr Michael Archibald of Grenada, will engage the netballers in a discussion on: Managing Finances as Young Persons in Challenging Economic Times.
Each year, the ECCB collaborates with the OECS Secretariat to stage the tournament in association with the designated host netball association. President of the Grenada Netball Association, Ms Janice Charles says preparations for the tournament are well on the way. The tournament will open with a reception and candlelight ceremony at the Grenada Trade Centre. All the matches will be played at the Tanteen Complex.
St. Kitts won the tournament last year on home soil.