A call has been made to include athletics and basketball in the upcoming National Sports Meet. The National County Sports Meet which is the country’s biggest sporting festival, has been postponed after the organizers disclosed that it will be held at a new date following the inauguration of president-elect George Weah. This is the fourth time it has been postponed since it was earlier slated for December 2, 2017.
Participating teams are said to be frustrated due to the postponement but from all indications enthusiasm still exists and everyone is eagerly awaiting the new date and the first edition of the event under the leadership of soccer legend George Weah.
The competition was previously postponed due to the just ended electoral process and the disagreement by Superintendents that the eight thousand USD (US$8,000) given to each county for the competition was inadequate. This latest postponement is due to the impending inauguration of President Weah.
This postponement however provides an opportunity. a moment for organizers to revisit their previous decision to exclude basketball and athletics from this year’s edition. This is challenging however, athletes are hoping things can still workout.
Earlier during the organizing stages of the tournament, athletes are said to have expressed disappointment when they learned that basketball and track-and-field were dropped from the list of sporting activities. Basketball was part of the last edition after Nimba County emerged as champions, while athletics was dropped due to the renovation of the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex.
For athletes, it will become more frustrating if these two sporting disciplines are not included after the new date for the commencement of the sporting festival is announced. Moreover, according to the organizers, it is important to host this all important event in the wake of conclusion of the country’s electoral process, an ideal that many support.
Now that the postponement has given time for reflection, it is hoped that things may turn out for the better because the country will by then have a president that attaches lots of importance to the games. According to some athletes, president-elect, George Weah who understands the frustration of a player will never allow the frustration of our basketball and track-and-field athletes to continue during his first National County Sports Meet after his historical triumph as a sports icon.
Finally, despite the numerous postponements, the enthusiasms of the country’s biggest sporting festival still exist. The County Meet is not only an anxiety of football and kickball supporters. It is the anxiety of other federations, associations, athletes, and supporters of different sporting disciplines. Above it all, it is the anxiety of every Liberian in the sporting world. Include Basketball and Athletics.