Singh, Hercules going the extra mile for Americup qualification

Ahead of its important stint in Colombia in a matter of weeks, the Guyana Amateur Basketball Federation (GABF) has a clear contingency plan of how it is going to prepare the qualification team and get to the Spanish-speaking destination.
A few days ago, on January 26, the Federation held its Annual General Meeting (AGM), where a new executive body was elected. Even though it was technically their first day in office, members of the new executive already had a clear idea of what has to be done in order for Guyana to make it to the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Americup 2021 Championships.
After leading a Guyanese national team to a Caribbean Basketball Championship win in June 2018, putting together a winning team will be an easy job according to Coach Junior Hercules. Responding to questions from the media shortly after his election to the post of Technical Coordinator on Saturday, Hercules disclosed that plans were already in place and a number of the players from the CBC Championship team have already indicated their interest.
“I’ve been in discussion with Anthony Moe, Stanton Rose and Kevon Wiggins, and they all are excited to represent their country once more,” Hercules said.
Meanwhile, star players Ray Victor and Travis Burnette will miss out on the Colombia action.
The FIBA Americup qualifiers will run from February 22 to 24 in Bogota, Colombia. Prior to this, players who are of the opinion that they have the requisite skills will have an opportunity to try out for the team.
“What we have planned, ideally, is to have on the ninth and the tenth of February a trial which we plan to invite – as the President indicated – players from the local scene who we believe should be given an opportunity to represent the country at the highest level,” the Coach disclosed.
Following this weekend of scouting, the Federation will host seven days of encampment for those players who were selected to represent the Golden Arrowhead.
The team are expected to jet off on February 20 for the competition in which they will be playing in Pool B against hosts Colombia, Bolivia, and Paraguay.
Aside from being on their ‘A’ game for the competition, the Guyanese team will have no worries as the Federation intends to source the necessary funding for the team. While accommodation and meals will be taken care of by their hosts, the GABF will be tasked with covering travel and other miscellaneous fees, which newly-elected President Michael Singh estimates to be to the tune of $7 million.
Noting that it was a “low-ball” figure of the costs they are facing, Singh said that the Federation would be in talks with corporate Guyana and Government in order to offset the expenses.
“I’d like to see us covering all the expenses to get that team out without any hiccups,” Singh disclosed.