BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – THE St. Kitts-Nevis Netball Association confirmed that the Federation did not field a team to this year’s OECS Championships due to several changes that were made without adequate notice.
The announcement was made by Executive Member Dion French at a press conference to address the issue.
According to French, the tournament, which is usually the Under-23 Championships, changed to become an open international league competition.
“A series of events transpired that has led the St. Kitts-Nevis Netball Association not to field a team this year…This year’s tournament has changed, and during the process of the change many countries such as St. Kitts-Nevis were unable to attend because it is an international series and it is under the INF.
“One of the requirements was that each team or country that is participating should be an INF member. Another incident that occurred was that St. Kitts would normally participate as St. Kitts, and Nevis as Nevis. We saw that last year in the tournament. One of the conditions this year was that we have to come as St. Kitts-Nevis and not individual countries,” French explained.
That did not sit well with the national executive.
According to French, that was not the only issue the association dealt with.
“Other incidents [sic] that occurred was that most countries were unaware that the tournament had been rebranded, and just in the last week we were aware that there was no age limit for the tournament because St. Kitts was practicing a U-23 squad. And last week Thursday we were made aware that it is an open tournament.”
The SKNNBA is aggrieved over the lack of proper consultation prior to the start of the tournament.
That, French said, played a key role in the team not participating, noting at the time that he would not be walking back on the participation.
In fact, when he was asked by a reporter if he and the body would walk back their non-participation, French said they are focusing on the 2020 edition of the tournament.
“There is no fault on St. Kitts and Nevis Association, but proper consultation, time and deadline and period to adapt to the inaugural change were not given…”
The OECS Netball Series wrapped on Yesterday (Jun. 22) in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.