Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019
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Munnings’Sports Director role-a new challenge

It won’t take Tim Munnings long to get into the groove in the position of Director of Sports. He is set this week to begin finding out the many challenges the new role presents.

Expect steadiness from Munnings in the all-important post within our national sports development program. A sober headed individual, he no doubt will bring to the Ministry of Sports the same kind of solid contribution that was a given from him during the nearly 10 decades as an elite 1,600 meters relay runner for his country.

Munnings’best time in the open 400 meters was 45.81 seconds, not in the class of contemporaries like Chris Brown, Avard Moncur, Troy McIntosh, Andrae Williams and several others. He could be counted on however, to produce a low 45 seconds split every time out in the relay.

His dependable efforts kept him on the world-respected national 1,600 meters(m)relay team from the 1996 Olympic Games through to 2004. He was a part of two medal-winning squads, the gold at the 2001 World Championships and a bronze at the 2002 Commonwealth Games. Munnings gave his country eight years at the top level of world athletics. He is thus applauded.

As tough as it was for him, going against the best in the world during his competition years, as the Director of Sports, he will find himself in a tight spot often. The demands in sports have become increasingly greater. Sports leaders from the various federations are constantly knocking on the Director of Sports’door.

The administration of the subvention program and other like matters within the ministry, fall under his jurisdiction. The Minister of Sports, the Permanent Secretary(PS), sports officers want the attention of the director always.

Kevin Colebrooke did a quality job filling in as Acting Director of Sports, but he might be actually relieved that the burden is now on the slim shoulders of Munnings instead of his own. Munnings comes on board at a pivotal time.

The sports budget has been cut. There is only a certain amount of funds to make the rounds. Federations are annually applying for additional athletes to be endorsed for subvention. The Bahamas Anti-Doping Commission needs to be jump-started. The National Sports Stadium is scheduled for official opening next June.

There is to be a Sports Authority officially in place to coordinate the activities at the National Stadium. It’s a safe bet nevertheless, that the Director of Sports will find himself involved from time to time in what’s going on at the National Stadium. That’s just the way it is.

There is this wide territory that has to be covered by the Director of Sports. Sometimes when a good working bond develops with a particular PS, he/she is changed and the Director of Sports has to begin a new working relationship.

I’m sure though, that Munnings will face the collective challenge that comes with the job. Hopefully when all is said and done, his performance will be judged on an equal basis or better than his relay contributions.

Best wishes Tim!

(To respond to this column, kindly contact frobertsturrup@gmail.com)

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