TENNIS STARS IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Champions Recognised at SLHTA’s Inaugural Awards Event
Maxx and Megan William emerged as top personalities at the recent St. Lucia Tennis Association [SLTA] inaugural Awards Ceremony where a selection of outstanding players and officials were recognised.
The brother and sister duo currently pursuing studies overseas were among a selective group to be recognised at the SLTA’s first ever annual awards held at National Tennis Centre, in Beausejour, last Saturday. The event acknowledged the hard working efforts of players, management team, and technical officials in helping to fully develop the sport of lawn tennis on island.
SLTA President Dr. Stephen Mc. Namara delivered an upbeat speech commending the quick work of the organization in putting this event together in such a speedy manner.
“This event truly showcases the commitment that all of us have shown towards our sport,” said Dr. Mc Namara.
He said that in 2010, “we were gifted and entrusted with this invaluable facility, which we all
own as a home for tennis in Saint Lucia.” He also acknowledged the support from the Taiwanese embassy, who teamed up with the government of St. Lucia to provide the tennis facility.
Dr. Mc Namara continued, “Today, we can stand and boast of our own home and the many talented players which it has produced.”
The SLTA president reassured that, “This event presents an opportunity to reflect on the growth and developmental goals that we have so that we can use them as benchmarks when we sit to plan our calendar of activities each year.
“Whilst it’s important to celebrate individual achievement, it is also critical that we gather strategic lessons from such assemblies so that we can consolidate our collective contribution to maintain and sustain the growth of the development potential of the sport.”
Other speakers at the event, included Director of Sports Patrick Mathurin who urged the SLTA to aspire for higher heights in the pursuit of greater accomplishments.
President of the St Lucia Olympic Committee, Senator Fortuna Belrose reflected on her early years as a player in the sport and the numerous friendships that was formed. She said the players can use this platform as a stepping stone to further their personal careers, utilizing six (6) basic principles that inculcates; self-awareness, exercising that freedom of choice, personal desire to become involved, enjoy what you do, preparation, and optimism.
She added; “As citizens of this country …we have a golden opportunity in tennis, you are fortunate in that you have your own centre. Not many sports are that lucky and so you have an opportunity to continue to create impact, to continue to create impressions on young lives about sport and their future.”
Meanwhile, winners in the respective categories were as follows:
- Esteemed Award for Sporting Excellence- Ron Blanchard
- Coach of the Year- Vernon Lewis
- Academy of the Year- Acers Tennis Club.
- Sportsman of the Year- Maxx William
- Sports Woman of the Year- Meggan William
- Junior Sportsman of the Year- Jordan Hunt
- Junior Sportswoman of the year- Iyana Paul
- Team of the year- Jorja Mederick and Alysa Elliott
- Top high performance athletes per category and gender.
Under 12s- Boy Jaidyn Mathew, Girl Latoya Murray
Under 14 - Boy Arden Rosemond, Girl Iyana Paul
Under 16- Boy Maxx William, Girl Alysa Elliott
Under 18- Boy Maxx William, Girl Aviona Edmund
- Media Awards- David Pascal
- Community Achievement Award- Ricardo Francois
- Technical Official Award- Catherine Morille
- Posthumous Award-Una Francis
- Recognition of all Sponsors- Sagicor Life, DuBoulays Bottling Company Limited, Northwest Limited, National Lotteries Authority, Ministry of Youth Development and Sports, Ultramart Inc, Voyager St. Lucia, St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited and The Oliver Gobat Sports Fund.
- Hall of Fame Induction - First inductee into the Hall of Fame is Vernon Lewis.
[By: Reginald Andrew].