Sports

Newton is new regional tennis body president

Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) President Perry Newton got another accomplishment under his belt as he was elected president of Confederation of Tennis of Central American and the Caribbean (COTECC) Sub-region 3 countries on Tuesday. He will be at the helm for the next two years. The countries that are a part of that sub-region are The Bahamas, Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica and Puerto Rico.

“This is an exciting and amazing opportunity to represent The Bahamas internationally,” Newton said. “I feel as though the door of opportunity has been open for athletes, administrators, coaches and the country. I am humbled and look forward to serving as part of the COTECC team. I look forward to bringing more tennis focus, activities and collaboration to Sub-region 3. I thank God for this wonderful opportunity to represent The Bahamas on this global stage.”

COTECC is one of six regional bodies sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation (ITF). It is divided into four sub-regions. The main goals of the body are to encourage, direct, organize, regulate, govern and disseminate the practice of tennis; and to organize and run tournaments, championships and training programs for national tennis federations.

COTECC President Persio Maldonado is from the Dominican Republic. He was elected in August.

The BLTA chief will look to create joint programs with the member countries.

“I think the position helps the BLTA to create collaborative programs with our neighbors. When speaking with other presidents of national tennis federations, you realize that the goal is the same. There is a desire to see your athletes excel, there is a desire for growth, there is a desire for sustainability. At the COTECC AGM (Annual General Meeting), there was a quote used, ‘if you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go, far go together’.”

Newton hopes The Bahamas can host a few tournaments and also participate in more regional events.

“One area that I am looking to focus on for this term will be increasing participation among the nations in COTECC Sub-region 3. I will work on The Bahamas hosting COTECC tournaments and increasing our country’s participation outside of the regional team events.”

Newton won the BLTA’s top post last year July. There has not been much tennis played locally since March 2020, due to the country’s health protocols because of the presence of COVID-19 but there were a few tournaments held earlier in the summer. The BLTA was able to send off the senior men’s and women’s national teams to Panama City, Panama, in the summer. The men participated in the Davis Cup and the women played in the rebranded Billie Jean King Cup.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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