By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway
In the most competitive election held in the BVI Basketball Federation 45-year history and a battle between two former players that needed a recount, Derrick Varlack edged Kennedy Bass, 14-13, to become the body’s 16thpresident on Tuesday night during elections held at the Department of Youth Affairs and Sports. Derwin Scatliffe picked up two votes.
Varlack replaced two times president, Guy “The General” Malone, who did not seek reelection after 30 years in the sport.
“I’ve been in basketball for the last 45 years and it means a lot to me because, I’m actually giving 100% in bringing back basketball and looking forward to bringing back basketball in the BVI,” Varlack told Island Sun Sports exclusively. “I have an agenda that I will share with the public at a later date and I mean well for this country.”
With no league over the last three years, Varlack said bring a league back, getting the association functioning, developing and bringing back national teams are among his priorities. “We have to start sending guys out there to represent our country,” he said, adding getting a youth program in place among his top three priorities.
“We have to start training the youth at a young age, so that in the next 16-20 years, they’ll be preparing for the Olympics,” he said. “Get FIBA involved with the training; get the country involved with the youths; the government involved in providing funds for these children and most of all, I look forward to working together with my team.”
Jason Edwin joins the executive as Vice President, after a 16-9 margin over Cromwell “Eju En Ka” Smith. Norval Young had two votes. Natasha Marshall got the nod for General Secretary, with a 16-9 edge over Judith Harrigan. Mohammed Tarabay garnered a 19-5 edge over Marsha Woodley, to become the Assist Secretary. Carol Ann Simmons became the Treasurer, after an 18-9 margin over Kevon “Shack” Lettsome.
Lettsome trimmed Myia Blyden, 13-12, in becoming the Assistant Treasurer. Brion Massicotte earned two votes. Eustace “Boss” Freeman is the Public Relations Officer, after getting 18 votes to five for Linton Leonard. Jerry Samuel had one. Angelle Cameron is the Assistant Public Relations Officer, following a 19-5 advantage over Karl “Dub” Scatliffe. Marshall Thomas had one vote. Trevor “West” Stevens is the Sr. Division Player’s Rep, with a 15-11 margin over Leslee Smith. Ronnie “Gola” Simmonds is the Jr. Division Players Rep, with a 22-4 tally over Eric “Shaq” Matthias.
The new president said since the time has passed for having teams registered for a 2019 league, the only league in the country will be the Save The Seed League, of which he is the Commissioner and the only one operational.
“What I’ll try to do is to get all the leagues on stream so that they don’t coincide with each other, we don’t want a bulking up of leagues where you have Virgin Gorda playing, Save The Seed playing and a league in town playing,” he pointed out. “The three leagues have to sit down, get a starting and finishing date for each league, so they don’t coincide with each other.”