Sport Jelani Beckles right nowIn this September 7, 2019 file photo, Morvant Caledonia AIA defender Radanfah Abu Bakr (left) shields Kishon Hackshaw of Terminix La Horquetta Rangers during a game in Division One of the Ascension Invitational Football Tournament at the La Horquetta Recreation Ground, Arima. away . On Monday, the director of the Ascension League, Richard Ferguson, called on TT footballers and staff to get vaccinated against the coronavirus to enable a return to football. – Roger Jacob

ASCENSION League Director Richard Ferguson urges local soccer players, administrators and stakeholders to listen to Minister of Sport and Community Development Shamfa Cudjoe and get vaccinated so that soccer and other sports can return to some sort of normalcy.

When asked if TT is taking classes in other countries in the region, such as Jamaica, where the sport has resumed, Cudjoe said, “I’m glad you asked this question, and like in any other sector … the faster we vaccinate, the sooner we could return. ”to some degree of normalcy. I would like to repeat that for football, for hockey – regardless of the sport. “

Cudjoe spoke during a media conference on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on Friday.

She said the athletes are still in no hurry to get their vaccines.

“In my opinion, the reluctance to vaccinate is quite high even in sports. There are still some athletes who are reluctant to even go to Tokyo (Olympics). All members of our team (were) not vaccinated. “

Ferguson, the executive director of Terminix La Horquetta Rangers, said his club responded to government requests to get vaccinated.

On Monday, Ferguson told Newsday, “Everyone is vaccinated (with the Rangers), from management to coaches to players – everyone. We have already received our second dose. “

Ferguson said he doesn’t need to encourage members of the club to get the jab.

“I didn’t have to push them: they wanted to take it. They begged to take it. “

Ferguson encouraged other clubs to get vaccinated.

“We have to keep the Prime Minister’s words. He has asked the public several times to get vaccinated. “

However, Ferguson understands that resuming a league during a pandemic will be challenging as the virus is still spreading.

The Jamaica Premier League (football) recently started after a long hiatus. Ferguson, speaking as Ascension director, said, “We have been ready (to start the league) since last year. We are waiting for the government to allow contact sports. ”He said members of the TT Football Association had recently held talks with clubs to vaccinate all local players, referees and stakeholders. Club Sando FC and Morvant Caledonia AIA also encourage their members to get vaccinated.

Club Sando Team Administrator Eddison Dean said, “All of our staff are vaccinated … I’m not sure about the players because we weren’t allowed to train so we’re not connected because we’re going to become (as) a Pro League club Players have to sign and at this point because there is no football we can’t really (speak to our players).

Dean said, “Until we have (that) okay (that), we’ll have some football, then we could hire players.”

Dean isn’t sure which players will represent the club when football resumes.

He said players interested in representing Club Sando should get vaccinated.

“Of course that’s a must,” said Dean. The manager of Caledonia AIA Sejoux Leo-Star said: “We, as a sports organization and one of the market leaders in the TT Pro League, would do everything to ensure that the livelihood of our sport and the livelihood of our young people who are at risk are restored Field to come. “

Bethel Utd manager Don Soverall said of his players, “I can’t really confirm all of them have been vaccinated, but some of them have confirmed they are already vaccinated … and some said they will take it.”

Soverall, who said some members of Bethel are hesitant, believes some will be more likely to be encouraged to get vaccinated if the start of a league is confirmed.

“If you hear the league starts next week or next month and they want to play, they’ll step in, but they tell themselves there isn’t football, so don’t fight too much … take it.”

Petit Valley / Diego Martin Utd manager Derek Edwards agrees with Soverall that players are more likely to get vaccinated if a league is planned.

“It has no football so no one is in a hurry,” said Edwards.

However, Edwards also believes that gamers need to be educated about the vaccine.

TT Super League President Clayton Morris also said Newsday was key to promoting football players.

“I think educating them (about the virus and the vaccine) could really make a difference.”