BVIFA to host Youth Festival Tournament

Hot on the heels of the successful BVI Football Association Women’s and Men’s Festival Cups, attention now turns to the Youth Festival Tournament for girls and boys scheduled for Saturday, August 15 and Sunday, August 16 at the National Stadium venue, East End / Long Look, Tortola.

BVIFA President, Mr. Andrew Bickerton and the Executive Committee along with Technical Director, Mr. Dan Neville and the coaching staf led by Tinnie Percival, have continued to focus on youth development plans geared towards inclusion of players across the Territory and have even been able to recently launch regular coaching sessions on Jost Van Dyke.

According to Neville, the Youth Festival is a key component in the BVIFA’s development plans: “It is a great way to get all the players back together again in a competitive environment for the first time since lockdown and the Festival will also act as a lead-in to the BVIFA’s Academy Youth League.”

The Youth Festival Tournament is split into two age groups with those born between 2008 and 2011 featuring on the Saturday, whilst those born between 2003 and 2007 play on the Sunday.

Both age groups will play in the same round robin format with the younger group having games of 20 minutes duration and the older group 25 minutes.

The BVIFA promises both days will be action packed and filled with fun as there will be a DJ, food, refreshments, trophies and lots of competitive football.

Sugar Boys are BVIFA Festival Cup Champs!

The Sugar Boys F.C. were crowned as BVIFA Festival Cup Champions on August 4, 2020

The Sugar Boys F.C. were crowned as BVIFA Festival Cup Champions on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 after MVP, Derol Redhead scored a winner late in the first half of a 2 – 1 defeat of Lion Heart F.C. at the East End / Long Look National Stadium venue.

Although the newcomers, Lion Heat, were playing in their first ever final, they matched the Sugar Boys from Virgin Gorda virtually kick for kick and the two sides were inseparable after Sheldon Brown equalized for Lion Heart in the thirteenth minute, following Terrence Nanton’s tenth minute opener.

However you can never discount the effect Redhead can have on a game and – not for the first time – he popped up big when it mattered most and netted the go ahead goal and what proved to be the winner.

“It means a lot,” said Redhead, whose goal also earned him a share of the Golden Boot Trophy along with team mate Norman Hernandez.

The second half saw no further goals and Lion Heart skipper Dwayne Smith was left to rue not putting the Sugar Boys under more pressure, paying too much respect early, losing the midfield battle and ultimately the game.

BVIFA President, Mr. Andy Bickerton presented the awards, which apart from the Trophy and a winner’s check for 4000 dollars to the Sugar Boys, also included a Runners Up check for 2,000 dollars to Lion Heart. The Fair Play Trophy was claimed by the Sugar Boys and the Golden Glove Trophy, which went to Lindell Williams.

The Sugar Boys claimed their spot in the last four following a 4 – 1 win against Old Madrid F.C. courtesy of a hat trick from Derol Redhead (26’, 36’, 79’) and Akeem Hendrickson, who scored in the eightieth minute. Fitzroy Daley netted for Old Madrid.

Their opponents in the last four, One Love, had a much sterner test to come through as VG United took them all the way to a penalty shoot-out, after the match ended 1 – 1. However, Mauricio Guevara Villanueva held his nerve to fire his team into the semi, scoring the decisive penalty in a 3 – 2 win.

Lion Heart found themselves 1 – 0 down to the Wolues, but Shevaughn Thomas equalized in the forty fifth minute, before adding a second to put Lion Heart on the way to the last four and the win was confirmed as Oshane Ingram made it 3 – 1 at the death.

A brace of goals by Jean Charles Jnr. either side of a strike by Julian Davidson was enough for One Caribbean to secure their place, beating The Rebels F.C 2 – 1.

The first semi was scheduled for the National Stadium venue at East End / Long Look between the Sugar Boys and One Love at 4pm, whilst semi final number 2 featuring One Caribbean and Lion Heart was on the Virgin Gorda Recreation Ground at 6pm.

Pure Trouble comes out top in BVIFA Women’s Festival Cup

Pure Trouble, captained by Tinia Van-Zoost, came out on top of the points table after winning all three games in the BVIFA Women’s Festival Cup held at the East End / Long Look Stadium, Tortola on August 2, 2020.

The BVIFA Women’s Festival Cup was staged at the East End / Long Look Stadium on Sunday, August 2 with four teams participating in a round robin tournament.

Pure Trouble, captained by Tinia Van-Zoost, came out on top of the points table after winning all three games, with 9 points. Fire, captained by Ariel Mohamed, was second with 6 points. Purple Rain , captained by Joi-Ann Thomas, came third with 3 points and Pink Panthers placed fourth.

Individual awards went to Decima Lambert as Best Goalkeeper, Chelsea Edwards for Best Young Player, Casandra Gregg as Golden Lady, Shevonne Vanterpool as Golden Boot and Van Zoost as MVP.

Recently re-appointed BVIFA President, Mr. Andy Bickerton was on hand to present the trophies and was pleased with the turn out and complimented all those involved: “It was an excellent start to the revitalization of Women’s Football in the BVI. Coaches Anna French and Wayne Phillip are to be congratulated on the high level of technical ability displayed by all of the women.”

In the first match, Purple Rain defeated Fire 1 – 0 in a penalty shootout, with Mohamed the lone scorer, whilst in the next game Pure Trouble defeated Pink Panthers 3 – 2, also, in a penalty shootout after the match ended in a 1 – 1 tie. Vanterpool scored for Pure Trouble and French equalized for the Pink Panthers in regulation time before Vanterpool, Van-Zoost, and Morgan Creque all converted their penalties to give Pure Trouble the win. 

Purple Rain got their second win by defeating Pink Panthers 2 – 0 with Jacintha Weeks and Darci Reich on the scoresheet. Pure Trouble then defeated Fire 1 – 0 with Vanterpool scoring again. In the penultimate game, Pure Trouble kept their undefeated record intact when Kiara Woodley scored a late equalizer against Purple Rain, who had gone ahead through Kara Lewis. However, the momentum turned in the favour of Pure Trouble who went on to capture the win in the ensuing penalty shootout 2 – 1. 

The last match of the day saw Fire and Pink Panthers play to a 1 – 1 draw with goals from Murcella Gordon and French. 

BVIFA plans a weekend of Football Festivals

The BVIFA is promising an August holiday weekend full of football, Festival Style, at its National Stadium venue in East End / Long Look from August 1 – 4, 2020.

Although the Men’s Festival Cup kicks the action off on Saturday, August 1, full attention will be on the Women’s Festival Cup, scheduled for Sunday, August 2, as newly appointed Head Coaches, Wayne Phillips and Anna French look to revitalize and showcase women’s football within the BVI.

According to French, “the goal of the event is to revitalize and showcase women’s football within the BVI, identify and recruit talented players for the national program, and boost excitement for the upcoming women’s club competition.”

The Women’s Festival Cup will be run as a one-day round robin-style five-a-side tournament featuring 4 teams that will be drafted by national coaches on the morning of the event. Check-in and warmups will begin from 11:30 am with the first matches kicking off at 1pm. Round-robin games of 20 minutes (10 minutes each half) will be played throughout the day and the final match kick-off is at 3:30.

Players of all skill levels are highly encouraged to attend and participate. Supporters are welcomed but please note that social distancing measures will be enforced.

Lorrelle Walters-Abrams is the BVIFA Executive Member responsible for Women’s football and she noted, “one of the BVIFA’s strategic plans is to develop and promote Women’s football in the territory and get the Clubs more actively involved. The importance of Women’s football is not only recognizable, but it can also bring positive change and impact the Territory. Knowing we are a small country in comparison to our Caribbean neighbors, it is important to our well being both physically and mentally. With the support of the BVIFA Executive body and Technical staff along with strong leadership of Technical Director, Dan Neville, we will achieve our goals”

“We are all really looking forward to August 2 when we host the Women’s Festival Cup,” noted Neville. “I’m delighted with the growth of the women’s program over the last 12 months. Wayne and Anna have grown the numbers week-on-week and Lorrelle has played a key part in the program in terms of energy and ideas.”

Neville added that the BVIFA are also in advanced preparations and talks with the National League clubs to get a Women’s National League started in September.

There is also a Men’s Festival Cup over the Bank Holiday weekend, with games scheduled for East End / Long Look as well as Virgin Gorda.

In the first round the Wolues will face Lion Heart, at the National Stadium, East END / Long Look (4pm) whilst over on Virgin Gorda, the Panthers are up against the Rebels at 6pm and then the Islanders take on the Sugar Boys at 8pm.

BVIOC distributes Panam Sports coach funding to national federations

BVIOC presents coach hiring funds from Panam Sports to its national federations
BVI National Federations receive coach hiring funds from Panam Sports distributed by the BVIOC

The BVI Olympic Committee distributed cheques totaling $100,000 from Panam Sports to 14 of its member federations on June 26, 2020. The funds are part of Panam Sports’ special project for the hiring of coaches in support of sports development in the Americas.

The 14 national federations which currently are active and which are recipients of the coaching funds include Archery, Athletics, Basketball, Cycling, Football, Rugby, Taekwondo, Tennis, Triathlon, Sailing, Softball/Baseball, Squash, Swimming and Volleyball.

“Coaching is a fundamental part of the success of any athlete or team and the development of sports,” said Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC. “The BVIOC applied to receive its allocation of $100,000 from Panam Sports which earmarked the money specifically for the hiring of coaches. The BVIOC and its national federations are very appreciative of the funding which is yet another demonstration of Panam Sports’ continued commitment to supporting the growth and development of sports across its 41 member nations which includes the Virgin Islands.”

The funding for coaches is one of the latest tangible resources Panam Sports has made available to the BVIOC and its member federations. Sports and athletes receive the direct benefits which the BVIOC apply for whether it’s through a donation of training equipment, funds for repairs to facilities – including the replacement of the Mondo track at the A.O. Shirley Recreation Grounds or through development initiatives such as coach training sessions.

Panam Sports is also engaged with all athletes across the continent with its ongoing virtual support sessions featuring professional experts in all aspects of sports both physical and psychological. The virtual sessions were introduced as part of the organizations’ response to the impact of COVID-19 on athletes and their training and competition programmes in the lead up to the now rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games.

About Panam Sports

The Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) was established on August 8th, 1948 and is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the continental Association of the NOCs of the Americas. In 2017 the organization was rebranded as Panam Sports.

Its principal objects are the celebration and conduct of the Pan American Games and the promotion, development and protection of sport, as well as the Olympic Movement, in the Americas through its member NOCs. The current President, Neven Ilic, has held the post since 2017.

Olympic Day Community Walks

New Date: Saturday, July 4, 2020

Registration/Sign in: 5:30am

Group Start Times:
• Group 1: 5:30am
• Group 2: 5:45am
• Group 3: 6:00am

Location: All participating District communities throughout the Virgin Islands

Community Walk Locations:

  1. West End (sign in – Basketball court – walk to the ferry dock and back)
  2. Cane Garden Bay (Sign in – Myetts car park to the bridge at De Wedding, round to the commercial dock and back to Myetts)
  3. Brewer’s Bay (sign in – Nichol’s Beach Bar from 5:15am)
  4. Sea Cow’s Bay (sign in – Manuel Reef from 6:00am. Walk to Valerie O. Thomas Community Center and back)
  5. Road Town (sign in – Tortola Sports Club, Pasea – walk to Purcell roundabout down to Wickham’s Cay roundabout and back)
  6. Long Look (sign in YEP – walk to HLSCC and back)
  7. East End (sign in – Trellis Bay walk to the QEII Bridge and back)
  8. Jost Van Dyke (sign in – front of Government Admin Building, Great Harbour)
  9. Virgin Gorda (sign in – HLSCC, The Valley)
  10. Anegada (sign in – Claudia Creque, Education Center)

Walk managers include volunteers from the VI Archery Association, BVI Athletics Association, BVI Rugby, Taekwondo, BVI Squash Federation, VI Softball/Baseball Association, YEP, TSC, Brewer’s Bay Action Committee, Jost Van Dyke Resilience Team led by Mr. Mark Morris, Mr. Milton McLean and Sister Island Coordinator, Ms Sasha Flax.

Staggered start times will be managed to keep walking groups to a maximum of 20 persons with 6ft distance between participating households. Walkers are requested to cooperate with the walk managers in their efforts to keep the activity safe for everyone.

Participants will receive a free tee shirts and Dasani Water and Powerade distributed by Road Town Wholesale on a first-come-first-serve basis. Walkers are advised to also bring their own water to ensure proper hydration. Organisers are requesting the return of the empty plastic bottles so that they may be properly disposed of in the recycling bins.

In the interests of public health and safety, potential participants are advised to stay home if feeling unwell, running a temperature or living in the same household as quarantined persons.
starting point subject to supply.

Thank you for your support!

Check the Event page on Facebook

For more information contact (284) 541 7845 or email sofia@broadswordpr.com

BVIOC organises community walks to mark Olympic Day

Simone Foster, an annual participant, celebrates the end of an Olympic Day walk in the Virgin Islands

The BVI Olympic Committee in collaboration with its National Federations and community groups will be hosting early morning community walks throughout the Virgin Islands on Saturday, June 27, 2020 to promote the Olympic Day message to #StayActive.

The community walks will take place in lieu of the annual interactive Sports Festival which officially have taken place since 2017 to mark Olympic Day.

“This year, the COVID-19 pandemic forced the BVIOC to rethink its programme of an interactive discussion session and mini sports clinics planned for the 2020 Sports Festival and to organize an activity that would be compliant with the current local health protocols and social distancing measures” said Ephraim Penn, President, BVIOC. “With our low rate of infection and no current active cases, the proposal to host regulated walks in communities throughout the Districts met with approval from the Chief Medical Officer. The walks will start as early in the morning as curfew restrictions allow to try and beat the heat and will follow easy routes so as to be manageable by all ages and abilities.”

Registration for the walks will start at 5:30am in all locations apart from in Sea Cow’s Bay which will start at 6:00am and Brewer’s Bay which will start at 5:15am. Registration locations are as follows:
Basketball court, West End; Myett’s car park, Cane Garden Bay; Nichol’s Beach Bar, Brewer’s Bay; Manuel Reef car park, Sea Cow’s Bay, Tortola Sports Club, Road Town; YEP in Long Look and Trellis Bay car park in East End. Walks also will take place in Jost Van Dyke, registration in front of the Government Administration buildings, Great Harbour and at the HLSCC in The Valley, Virgin Gorda.

Walk managers include volunteers from the VI Archery Association, BVI Athletics Association, BVI Rugby, Taekwondo, BVI Squash Federation, VI Softball/Baseball Association, YEP, TSC, Brewer’s Bay Action Committee, Jost Van Dyke Resilience Team led by Mr. Mark Morris, Mr. Milton McLean and Sister Island Coordinator, Ms Sasha Flax.

Staggered start times will be managed to keep walking groups to a maximum of 20 persons with 6ft distance between participating households. Walkers are requested to cooperate with the walk managers in their efforts to keep the activity safe for everyone.

Participants will receive a free tee shirts and Dasani Water and Powerade distributed by Road Town Wholesale on a first-come-first-serve basis. Walkers are advised to also bring their own water to ensure proper hydration. Organisers are requesting the return of the empty plastic bottles so that they may be properly disposed of in the recycling bins.

In the interests of public health and safety, potential participants are advised to stay home if feeling unwell, running a temperature or living in the same household as quarantined persons.

About Olympic Day
June 23 is marked in the international sporting calendar as international Olympic Day. Originally observed by just 9 countries on that day in 1948, the IOC launched the symbolic run in 1987 which encouraged all National Olympic Committees (NOCs) to celebrate Olympic Day and promote the practice of mass sport. From 45 participating NOCs in the first edition in 1987, the numbers have grown to more than 100 participating NOCs.

Today, Olympic Day is built on the three pillars “move”, “learn” and “discover” integrating sports, education and cultural aspects to broaden the community reach and appeal. and to motivate and encourage people of all ages and abilities to engage in healthy, physical activity.

In 2012, the BVIOC was one of the few NOCs to host a celebration of all sports on Olympic Day at the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College. The morning of activity started with a 2-mile run followed by a discussion panel featuring local sporting personalities and moderated by Mr. Rey O’Neal. The action continued with National Federations showcasing their sports and encouraging public participation and ended with a performance by the Lashing Dogs. This format of interactive engagement was adopted as the global template in 2017 at which time the BVIOC officially launched its annual Sports Festival to mark Olympic Day.

BVIOC secures IOC approval for Territorial Song to be played at Olympic Games and other institutional events

British Virgin Islands Kyron Mcmaster won the men’s 400m hurdles final in a time of 48.25 seconds during the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games at the Carrara Stadium on the Gold Coast on April 12, 2018. It was the Virgin Islands’ first medal at a Commonwealth Games and was the impetus for the BVI Olympic Committee’s request to have the Territorial Song, “Oh Beautiful Virgin Islands” registered by the International Olympic Committee to be played at sporting events rather than the National Anthem, “God Save the Queen”. The IOC confirmed the change in May 2020. .Photo credit: SAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Marking another historic moment in sports for the Virgin Islands, the BVI Olympic Committee (BVIOC) received approval from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for the Territorial Song, “Oh, Beautiful Virgin Islands” to be played at future editions of the Olympic Games, the Youth Olympic Games and other institutional events and official activities of the IOC and its Affiliated Entities. The permission was confirmed by the IOC via email sent on May 7, 2020 after the BVIOC started the process for approval in 2018.

“The BVIOC is exceptionally proud to attain this milestone not just for our nation but for our athletes, their coaches, parents and supporters,” said Mr. Ephraim Penn, President of the BVIOC. “The motivation and emotion that is tied up in representing your country at a major competition can’t be underestimated. Hearing your national song playing as you enter an arena or when you stand on the podium enhances the sense of achievement and pride and underscores all the sacrifices, time and effort that athletes, teams and their support base put in to qualify and compete.”

Prior to this date, the national anthem, “God Save The Queen”, was played at major regional and international competitions and events during opening, closing and medal ceremonies to acknowledge the participation and podium finishes of the VI’s athletes and teams.

The BVIOC launched the process for approval at the urging of the former Minister for Education and Culture, Mr. Myron Walwyn who enquired about the possibility after Mr. Kyron McMaster’s historic gold medal win in the 400m Hurdles on April 12, 2018 at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia. The emotional occasion was made all the more poignant for it happening just 6 months after the devastation wreaked in the VI by Hurricane Irma and the tragic passing of McMaster’s mentor and national track and field coach, Mr. Xavier “Dag” Samuels. At that time, it became clear that the Territorial Song, which speaks to the VI’s national pride and identity, would have been the ideal accompaniment to the flag raising and medal ceremony.

Further noting that the VI was one of the few nations that did not have its national song approved to be played at major sporting events, Penn made the inquiries and acted on the requirements to change the anthem registered with the IOC from the National Anthem to the Territorial Song.

The initiative was closely followed and encouraged by Dr. The Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley, the current Minister for Education and Culture, and the BVIOC was able to secure the support required from the Government of the Virgin Islands to initiate the official request. The BVIOC worked with the Ministry of Education and Culture to “be duly authorized and/or licensed to use and to authorise and/or sublicense the use of the Territorial Song,” as set out in the IOC’s National Anthem Authorisation document.

“Oh, Beautiful Virgin Islands” originally was composed in 2012 by Virgin Islanders, Ms. Ayana Hull and her brother, Mr. Kareem Nelson Hull in response to a competition for a Territorial Song launched by Walwyn, the then Minister for Education and Culture. The song, which was originally arranged by Mr. Howard John, was officially adopted as the Territorial Song by resolution of the House of Assembly of the Virgin Islands on July 24, 2012. As a British Overseas Territory “God Save the Queen” is the VI’s official national anthem.

The rousing, 80-second, orchestral version of the Territorial Song, requested by the BVIOC and approved by the Ministry for use by the IOC, was arranged by Mr. Alton Bertie, an Elmore Stoutt High School alumnus who graduated in the field of Film Scoring and Song Writing from the Berklee College of Music in Boston, USA.

Click to listen to the score for the Territorial Song by Mr. Alton Bertie.

Live Workshop on Sports Psychology –

The BVIOC Athletes’ Commission is proud to present its first workshop. The free, 60 – 90 minutes virtual zoom session on Sports Psychology: “The Mental Approach to On-Field Success” will take place at 7:00pm on Tuesday, May 12, 2020 featuring Dr. Margaret Ottley Ph.D., M.S., M.A., B.A.; CMPC, FELLOW-AASP, a Trinidadian Native, who is one of the most sought after sports performance psychologist.

Dr. Ottley worked at 4 Olympics, 1 with USA Track and Field (’08), 2 with Trinidad (’04, ’12) where Team Trinidad won its most Olympic Medals to date, and Rio ’16 where she worked with individual athletes including Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad (TTO only medalist in ‘Rio). The discussion will be moderated by Kyron McMaster, the VI’s Commonwealth Gold Medalist, and IAAF Diamond League Champion in the 400mH.

Topics in the discussion include Visualization, Goal-setting, Building Confidence (Self-Talk Techniques), and Overcoming Mental Block with additional material provided for athletes to apply to training and competition. The workshop is designed to be interactive and to provide practical tools to manage the mental aspect of performance. It will help athletes learn useful techniques to prepare mentally for training and competition.

The workshop is open to all athletes, parents, and coaches who should register through the following link:
https://bit.ly/MentalZoom or via email sent to athletescommission@bviolympics.org.

New dates for Tokyo 2020 creates certainty, eases pressure

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced the new dates for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on March 30 which now will be celebrated from July 23 to August 8, 2021 and the Paralympic Games will be celebrated from August 24 until September 5, 2021.

These new dates give the health authorities and all involved in the organisation of the Games the maximum time to deal with the constantly changing landscape and the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ephraim Penn, President of the BVI Olympic Committee along with National Olympic Committee representatives from around the world attended a video conference on March 27 and were solicited for any comments and concerns. The new dates – exactly one year after those originally planned for 2020 (Olympic Games: 24 July to 9 August 2020 and Paralympic Games: 25 August to 6 September 2020) – were decided based on three main considerations:

  1. To protect the health of the athletes and everyone involved, and to support the containment of the COVID-19 virus.
  2. To safeguard the interests of the athletes and of Olympic sport.
  3. The global international sports calendar.

The new dates for Tokyo 2020 will ease the pressure on organisers of qualification events and enable them to reschedule competitions once the COVID-19 impacts can be assessed and restrictions reduced without compromising athletes’ health. International Federations are also requested to only confirm upcoming qualification events in their respective calendars once they can guarantee fair access and fair and appropriate preparation for the competing athletes and teams. The IOC President, Thomas Bach hosted a conference call with the Global Network of Athletes’ Commission Representatives on Tuesday, March 31 to layout these decisions.

All athletes already qualified and quota places already assigned for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 will remain unchanged. This is a result of the fact that these Olympic Games Tokyo, in agreement with Japan, will remain the Games of the XXXII Olympiad. The same heat mitigation measures as planned for 2020 will be implemented.

“The BVI Olympic Committee continues to stand by our qualified athletes and hopefuls for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games which now will be held in the Summer of 2021,” said Penn. “Extensions from Olympic Solidarity for financing programmes such as Olympic Scholarships for Athletes for Tokyo 2020 means that we will be able to keep up with the monthly payments to our athletes as well as top it up with the sponsorship money from iForex. Panam Sports has also reached out to us and we are in discussions on how they can support the BVI and our athletes on the road to the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Games.”

“I am in direct communication with all of our athletes who have Tokyo 2020 in their sights and can help them with answering or flagging any issues relating to the preparations for the Games,” said Chef de Mission Tahesia Harrigan-Scott. “So far, we are on a positive trajectory and working on readjusting our preparation timelines for the new dates of the Summer Olympic Games.”