High school coaches say no to cancelling Champs

Hydel High School’s coaches Cory Bennett (right) and John Mair.

Some high school coaches have said that it would be “very disappointing” to stage the Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championship without spectators or cancel the event out of fear of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Following the announcement on Tuesday of one case of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Jamaica, the Government is contemplating whether or not to have the popular “Champs” scheduled to begin on March 24 kept behind closed doors or not at all.

Corey Benett, head coach of Hydel High School, believed a Champs without spectator is not Champs at all.

“Champs is about putting on a show pretty much and you will have persons coming from all over the world. Champs really is about the spectacle. Having Champs behind closed doors won’t be Champs. I don’t think Champs will be Champs without the spectators,” said Bennett.

Meanwhile, David Riley, head coach of Excelsior High, said: “It would be very disappointing if the meet is cancelled mainly because it would be a missed opportunity for these athletes to go out there and produce the performances that would help many of them to move on to the next level.”

The Government and the stakeholders will be meeting today and an announcement will be made regarding the event.

On Tuesday, the Government announced that a ban preventing schools from travelling to the US to participate in the prestigious Penn Relays in Pennsylvania has been put in place.