GOA plans packed programme for 2002 By Michael DaSilva
Stabroek News
February 28, 2002

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The Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) plans to send representative teams to three international competitions this year, as well as organise three Olympic Solidarity courses for officials of its affiliates.

The Barry Massay Memorial Games are also to be revived after an absence of two years. This is slated for August 31 and September 1.

According to a GOA 2002 programme of activities, Guyana could be represented at the 7th South American Games, slated for Cordoba, Argentina from April 4-14, the Commonwealth Games billed for Manchester, England, from July 20 to August 5 and the 19th Central American and Caribbean Games in San Salvador, El Salvador from November 23 to December 7.

The GOA has plans to organise coaching courses for boxing, table tennis and Weightlifting through assistance from the International Olympic Committee/Olympic Solidarity arm. A course for sports administrators is also planned for this year.

According to GOA general secretary Ivor O'Brien, the Commonwealth Games Committee has stated its willingness to assist the GOA in fielding a team to the games but have not defined the nature of assistance.

O'Brien pointed out that individual competitors are not required to qualify for any of the three international games billed for this year. "That only applies to team sports," the long serving general secretary stated. He however explained that individual associations will have to recommend their athletes to the GOA.

With regards the Olympic Solidarity courses, O'Brien said each association will select the officials to attend the three courses.

According to O'Brien, the IOC/Olympic Solidarity will select the course instructor for each discipline. However, individual associations can make recommendations to the GOA which in turn will notify the IOC of the preference.

The boxing course is planed for March 11-22, weightlifting from May 6-17 and the table tennis from June 24 to July 5.

The sports administrators course which will cater for 25 persons, is scheduled for August 16-20. It will be the fourth such course organised by the GOA and this time around, the GOA will place emphasis on regional participation.

O'Brien explained that the first two sports administrators courses catered for associations only while the third included personnel from the Guyana Teachers Union. "This time we want to encourage regional participation" O'Brien stated.

According to the GOA's estimated cost, for its (GOA) 2002 programme to be a success, over Guy$10M is needed. This figure does not include the cost for the Olympic Solidarity courses, since these three courses will be sponsored by the IOC at a cost of $1.3M each.