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A funny story

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A funny story

Postby Power-of-ten-man » Thu Jun 29, 2006 12:52 pm

I know I really shouldn't, but this is so funny, found it on another site!
It should brighten up everyones day!





After a "world wide search for the best possible person" by a top international firm of executive head hunters, lasting over a year, Moorcroft suddenly found Collins lurking around UKA's offices. Collins having come in to make some sandwiches for a GB athlete he was mentoring.

"Dave! fancy seeing you here" said our CEO, also called Dave. "You're just the man I need. We're desperate for a new Performance Director to take over when our wonderful Max retires down to Eastbourne next March"

"What me?" grunted the other Dave. "but I don't know anything about athletics, "I'm a pyschologist" and added, proudly, "but I do have a black belt in Karate and I was a marine!"

"Don't worry about that," said our other Dave, now becoming visibly excited at having found his holy grail. "You're perfect, you can get us out of the sh*t. The sport will accept you because you've got a PhD so you must know what you're talking about even if you confuse everyone else. And you're a big bloke so nobody will argue with you. Black belt and an ex marine, eh? Good stuff. Just what we need" (but slyly he thought to himself, if it doesn't work the sport can blame him and not me)

Big Dave, looked puzzled. "Are you sure this will work?" he asked.

Little Dave, smiled, that nice bloke smile he has when everyone believes every word he says.

"Dave, I can promise you it's a piece of cake. And it's not like football so you can't get sacked. We just need the heat taken off us but we'll stand behind you. You've got the 'ology and the belt and the big knuckles. If you can't get this lot in to shape then nobody can"

Big Dave's eyes lit up under his furry brows. "you're right, I can do it. Where do I sign? I've always liked atheletics, especially the shot putt. Will I get to meet Geoff Capes?"
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A Horror Story

Postby Power-of-ten-man » Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:44 pm

Just look what this naughty man has writen now, it is more of a horror story, when will someone get hold of athletics and sort it out properly?


From the UKA website:

"Collins re-iterated a general warning that established athletes will have to perform this summer to retain their places at the highest levels of funding: “We have always said this will be a transition year. We are moving to a smaller, more focussed programme. The athletes know that there are several who need to rise significantly to the challenge this summer if their status is to be retained.”

Lists Of Athletes On The World Class Podium Programme: (note PODIUM. my brackets)

Sprints/hurdles:

Tim Benjamin, 23, Belgrave Harriers.

Darren Campbell, 32, Sale Harriers Manchester.

Natasha Danvers Smith, 28, Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers.

Malachi Davis, 28, Woodford Green & Essex Ladies

Marlon Devonish, 29, Coventry Godiva Harriers.

Donna Fraser, 33, Croydon Harriers.

Jason Gardener, 30, Wessex and Bath AC.

Graham Hedman, 26, Woodford Green & Essex Ladies.

Chris Lambert, 24, Belgrave Harriers.

Mark Lewis Francis, 23, Birchfield Harriers.

Lee McConnell, 27, Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers.

Christian Malcolm, 26, Cardiff AAC.

Christine Ohuruogu, 21, Newham and Essex Beagles.

Abi Oyepitan, 25, Shaftesbury Barnet Harriers.

Martyn Rooney, 19, Croydon Harriers

Nicola Sanders, 23, Windsor Slough Eton and Hounslow AC.

Robert Tobin, 21, Basingstoke and Mid Hants AC.

Andy Turner, 25, Sale Harriers Manchester.

Rhys Williams, 22, Cardiff AAC

Field/Combined Events:

Nathan Douglas, 22, Oxford City AC.

Jessica Ennis, 20, Sheffield AC and Trafford AC.

Ashia Hansen, 33, Birchfield Harriers.

Phillips Idowu, 26, Belgrave Harriers.

Jade Johnson, 25, Herne Hill Harriers.

Dean Macey, 27, Harrow AC.

Germaine Mason, 23

Nathan Morgan, 27, Birchfield Harriers.

Greg Rutherford, 19, Milton Keynes AC.

Goldie Sayers, 23, Belgrave Harriers.

Steven Shalders, 23, Cardiff AAC.

Kelly Sotherton, 29, Birchfield Harriers.

Chris Tomlinson, 24, Newham and Essex Beagles.

Shirley Webb, 24, Trafford AC.

Endurance:

Jon Brown, 34, Sheffield AC.

Kathy Butler, 32, Windsor Slough Eton and Hounslow AC.

Helen Clitheroe, 31, Preston Harriers.

Michael East, 27, Newham and Essex Beagles.

Jo Fenn, 31, Woodford Green with Essex Ladies.

Karl Keska, 33, Birchfield Harriers.

Nick McCormick, 24, Morpeth Harriers.

Jo Pavey, 32, Exeter Harriers.

Paula Radcliffe, 31, Bedford and County AC.

World class podium means those capable of making the podium in a world event. How many of the above could be said to be capable (on current performance) of achieving that? World class means that you must be in at least the top 10 in the world. So when only 4 are how come the rest are still being funded as if they are too?

Collin's "general warning" statements mean nothing. Most on this list are not world class so how have they managed to be on it? Is it because it would be embarrassing to have only 4 and UKA needs to pad it out with some distinct under performers and a few hopefuls to satisfy the money UKA gets from Sport England?

This is nonsense. Collins should be booting most of this lot off and putting those who warrant it, on the lower programme. But the trouble is it would only make HIM look bad ("what, only four athletes on the world class podium funding? What's going on?") so he won't do it.

Just one more example of UKA wastage of money and lack of accountability.
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Postby bevone » Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:10 pm

It was a cracker 'James' - I chuckled about that one all day! You'll get banned at this rate!

DC was a commander in the SBS apparently What you may call a real flippin hard arse! I'm sure selection for his UKA was a walk in the park in comparison.
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Postby Smoke » Fri Jun 30, 2006 4:14 pm

This type of dribble from James is why he got baned from here and why he has become more belligerent over there.

If anyone cares to do their homework they would know why these athletes are funded. You would also know more than catch phrases, hot buttons, and inflammatory remarks.

The only reason one would find this humorous is because you agree wholely or in part with this irrational heckler.
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Postby Northern Soulster » Fri Jun 30, 2006 4:33 pm

Smoke wrote:If anyone cares to do their homework they would know why these athletes are funded.


Hi Smoke,

Would you care to expand?

What does "World Class Podium" mean to UKA if not the potential to stand on the podium?

While some of those listed might have podium potential in the next few years, surely you are not suggesting they all do?
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Postby Smoke » Fri Jun 30, 2006 5:03 pm

Yes on the basics that is the premise behind the category. ANd yes they all have the potential to be on a podium, why do you think not? That is the point of the program, to help these athletes reach their perceived potential. Whether or not they do is a crap shoot no matter what.
There is no solid formula for predicting champions, look at MLF in 2000, the brain trust thought it was best to hold him out of Sydney so he could dominate Jnr. At the same time it was thought Kelly Holmes was on the decline and finished, now here we are with MLF looked down on and calling Kelly, Dame.
If these athletes do not meet expectations they will be replaced, that was told to all by the hated Dave Collins. For some reason folks missed the part where he cut a huge amount of people from funding. A few of the people we saw run this week are not funded at all!

Sorry, got on my soap box, I hate cynicism and crticism tha is irrational... The podium category is about getting athletes on the podium. There are three tiers in this category, the top being those that have achieved this goal previously, and the bottom being those that have shown potential. Money is allocated accordingly.

The real question is who should be funded if not these athletes in the UK? There is a developmental level of funding also for the jnrs and grass root athletes.
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Sun Jul 02, 2006 10:39 am

Hello mr Smoke, it seems that you do not like to see other peoples "strong" opinions on this forum, if they differ from your own! My harmless fun seems to have deeply upset you! Perhaps if you were capable of viewing the situation from James Montgomery's perspective you might develop a more balanced and fairer over view of the current problems facing us today?

I am delighted to hear that there is grass roots funding for athletes, could you give me some more information on how and where to get it!


Using your logic every athlete has the potential to get to the podium so do we fund them all or only those who have shown potential , like being in the worlds top ten, other wise we go back to the bad old days where athletes were funded for what seemed an age and nothing became of it, so for me it is funding accoring to levels of success all the way down to the younger athletes.
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Postby pegleg » Sun Jul 02, 2006 10:44 pm

A certain poster on here reminds me of another poster from a certain BBC messageboard...
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Postby athletic coach » Sun Jul 02, 2006 11:06 pm

I am concerned by the way the anti UKA lobby is going. Whilst I will agree with you that the organisation has a lot to answer for we must make sure that our critiscms are logical and based on fact.

After asking UKA what the criteria for funding was it is clear that there are a number of levels for funding all avaialble for athletes that reach certain standards.

I do not agree with the contracts that they are being asked to sign mainly becuase they are two contracts rolled into one and ask too much of the athletes.

Not every one within UKA is incompetent, however there are a number of people that are not in the right jobs and should never have been employed in those positions.

We can all agree to disagree but we must agree to be correct in our critique of the NGB.
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Postby Smoke » Mon Jul 03, 2006 4:00 pm

Jennifer that was cute but it is time to eat at the grown ups table. Saying i disagree with those with "strong" opinions different from mine is redundant. It is also ignoring the facts of my post and my opinion. It is not the disagreement that gets me going it is your irrational logic that gets me riled.
Athletic coach stated best, maybe that will sit on your pallate a little better. Read his opinion and then we can talk, it seems as though the way I state things upsets you.

And you can do your own homework on the varying levels and requirements of lottery funding. Your not knowing is at the crux of my opinion...
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Mon Jul 03, 2006 8:09 pm

Sorry God!

Athletic coach, I have yet to see anywhere anyone being incorreect with their critique of UKA, Most people have it nailed!
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Mon Jul 03, 2006 8:13 pm

Athletics coach, I will talk with you because I prefer the voice and reasoning of an englishman, I have just read this on a site, do you think this could be the best way forward to make UKA come to order?




Whilst most of us would agree that UKA as a governing body has failed, it will have little effect on the government to simply continue to criticise them here on this or other forums.

I would suggest some direct action:

1. Arrange for a letter to be sent to the DMCS (Tessa Jowell, the Minister in Charge) from your own club complaining about the failure of UKA to deliver the sport as promised and paid milliions in public money they have severely wasted to date and with no benefit to the grass roots.

2. Demand that the Public Audit Committee (copy to them) investigate Sports England's funding of UKA and their lack of continuous assessment of what UKA had been paid to achieve over the last 9 years.

3. Copy your club's letter to ABAC (www.britishathleticsclubs.com) so that they might make a collective representation on the clubs behalf to DMCS and at the same time make a press release urging investigative journalists to look closely at what has been and what is going on, i.e., ....Foster, England Athletics Ltd., growth in administration, loss of democracy, unaccountability, highly questionable appointments, management lack of qualification and experience, squandering of public funding, excessive profits by Fastrack, lack of proper support for the grass roots, etc., etc.

If you want the sport to fight back at the gross negligence and incompetence of UKA you have to be proactive and involve as wide an audience as possible. What we might achieve individually is far less than we we can, collectively and it needs to be in the national press.

We have a World Championship, next year followed in 2008 by the Olympic Games. Then it's just four more years (with World, European and Commonwealth inbetween) before we are on stage for the London Olympics.

Does anyone truly believe that UKA, after the last abysmal 9 years, are capable of achieving anything like we could if they remain in charge?

All it takes is 20-30 clubs to get their letters in and we have a campaign
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Postby athletic coach » Mon Jul 03, 2006 9:19 pm

Hi Jennifer

I agree with your sentiments about moving forward and the continued attacks on UKA, however if one is going to make comments to MP's and other government departments then a reasoned document must be presented. Words such as every one, we all, the sport, etc is not the way forward. All the MP's say is here we go again, someone did not get a job and is now complaining.

I worry that a number of people make the attacks personal and often in an illogical way. Many years ago I worked under a system that said no one makes mistakes on purpose and the majority of people would like to do a good job.

Managing change is one of the most difficult jobs going and there are not many people that have the experience to handle it, this I think is the main problem within UKA. coupled with not accepting that openess is the way to go forward.

I travel around the country and see lots of stadia with athletes competing and training. We have the talent but we do not know how to harness the talent and enthusiasm. We have strengh in depth, some of that strengh is able to obtain great coaching others do not and fall by the way side.

We must at some stage sit down around a table and discuss openly the way forward, without the continual personal attacks. I have had in the past a numberof rows with UKA and I tried not to make it a personal attack but constructive and winnable.

I spoke to a group of club members from the midlands and they all thought their registeration scheme was good for the sport and good for them, in the south a lot of people have the opposite view point.
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Tue Jul 04, 2006 6:45 pm

Hi Athletics coach,

given the adminstrative talent we have in this country, why could every thing not been done in a fair and reasonable manner when UKA was being constructed.....who are the people who have set the rot in before things got started 9 years ago and why have they chosen to behave in such a high handed controling manner?
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Postby athletic coach » Tue Jul 04, 2006 11:48 pm

Hi Jennifer

I believe UKA tried to take a modern approach to the new set up and started out by ignoring people previously involved in the running of athletics, unfortunately whilst the new set up had a lot of athletics people involved they lacked commerical skills to make sure the foundations were built correctly.

For instance I have often read "fast track the marketing arm of UKA" it is patently not and has never been. In a commerical organisation I would have gone out every three years to tender and made sure that I got the best deal for my company.

I do not believe that UKA set out to be such an organisation that it is today, but because of lack of experience got swept along with developing an unwealdy organisation. An example that highlights this is that they do not undertstand the ocst of employing someone. I was told that they had a budget of x to employ someone but could not understand that was just direct costs and other costs would double the actual cost the person being employed.

The situation we are in is very similar to that of Rugby when it went professional
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Wed Jul 05, 2006 10:05 pm

Thank you Athletics coach, this is begining to make sense!
Given all that has happened, do you think someone might be big enough to start all over again, and learn from past mistakes?
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Postby athletic coach » Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:43 pm

my honest answer must be no, but if someone did say we made a lot of mistakes and we need your help, I would support them and work with them in solving the issues that are about.

I do not understand why UKA dig deeper holes every time they do some thing. The situation with Paula Radcliffe and the contract is an example.

Why did they say that Paula just had no time to sign the contract, instead of the truth. By making such a mess of the contracts they are showing that the contracts are now unworkable in law as no judge will sanction contracts that have and/or will be changed for individuals.

During myworking life I have made mistakes and errors of judgement, but it is easier to put your hands up and ask for help then dig bigger holes.
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Postby daisy » Thu Jul 06, 2006 1:49 am

athletic coach wrote:The situation we are in is very similar to that of Rugby when it went professional

In what sense (excuse my ignorance)?

Did they have a bloated administration before streamlining?

Or was their problem that they alienated the clubs?

Or both?

Did they solve their problems? If so, from within, or by bringing in objective outsiders?
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Postby athletic coach » Fri Jul 07, 2006 12:00 am

The rugby union administration was made up of people who, for what ever reason, found it difficult to accept that the clubs had a say in the running of the sport. Ove a period of time a number of clashes were seen and the admin people would not talk to the clubs but sent out dictates. Until inthe end the club rebeled and forced the admin to talk to them. The clubs during this period had been taken over by more commercially aware people and developed the sport of rugby into a sport that gained a lot of people at all levels very quickly.

The problems were solved in many ways by the introduction of more commercially astute people at club and admin levels.

Track and Field in the UK is sick and needs support to get it through a tough time. Next year we shall see a reduction in the number of the teams competing at all levels and the reduction in the number of leagues and divisions.

Why, we have committed people, both paid and unpaid, enthusiastic people but we lack the drive from the top and the ability of our NGB to develop the infrastructure to obtain the results we want.

No one is sure how much of the funding is going to reach grass roots athletics, we have a NGB that employes people without undestanding the costs involved.

our infrastructure is layers upon layers of groups purporting to be involved in the world of athletics.

In the east of England the number of coaching course for 2006 is virtualy non-existant a summer athletic project is having to be cancelled because UKA cannot put on coaching courses on, for whatever reason.

If you write to Dave Moorcroft you do not get an answer, The one question he has never answered is "why if a club and an individual member offers to pay all costs involved in setting up a regular coaching education course, do UKA ignore the offer"
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Fri Jul 07, 2006 12:04 pm

If I was in charge of things Athletic Coach, I would have sent you a flying squad to deliver everything you required to devlop athletics in your area,
purely out of respect for all your wonderful input into the sport.

What 3 things would you do if you were put in charge, no limits!
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Postby athletic coach » Fri Jul 07, 2006 5:21 pm

1. make sure that athletics was developed in every school in the country.
2. Provide an athletics development officer with enthusiasm and all the right attributes to make athletics the summer sport.
3. Take advantage of the schools link lady I spent the afternoon with, A real diamond or una signora con le stelle per gli occhi e una cassa magnificient
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Postby daisy » Fri Jul 07, 2006 9:22 pm

athletic coach wrote:1. make sure that athletics was developed in every school in the country.

Excellent choice for the number one priority
athletic coach wrote:2. Provide an athletics development officer with enthusiasm and all the right attributes to make athletics the summer sport.

Sounds good, who has the job right now?
athletic coach wrote:3. Take advantage of the schools link lady

What is a link lady, seriously?
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Postby athletic coach » Fri Jul 07, 2006 9:29 pm

No one has the job right now - I do an unpaid job in a lot of local schools.

The link lady is a young woman who works in the schools organising and paying for after school lessons for youngsters from 9 to 18 years.

She is still a cracker.
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Postby Smoke » Sat Jul 08, 2006 8:55 am

Very good conversation but there is an important issue that keeps getting burshed aside or should I say the solution is presented from the wrong angle.
AC you should work towards the creation of a separate entity for your endeavors. You would ensure the funding for the grass roots programs because it would not go through the NGB. It is important to have this arm separate because the NGB is and always will be limited by its elite level ahtletes, and profile. No NGB is lauded or criticized for how the kids and juniors perform, rather it is all on the line on the highest level.
Here it matters but not elsewhere. The responsibility should be and needs to be removed from the UKA. It is not fair to any of the parties involved.
This would give an enormous amount of power to the associated entities, i.e. clubs and would only help to strengthen the small voices out here. Right now folk are screaming into the wind and not being heard and it is frustrating people to insanity.
It has worked in other countries. There are independent arms that still hold seats on the board of directors and have a huge say so in what happens in the organization, but they are not dependent on the NGB to get their business done.
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Postby athletic coach » Sat Jul 08, 2006 9:54 am

I actually get 98% of the funding for the schools programs we undertake from outside of the NGB or any athletic organisation.

Next week I set up another 6 primary schools with sportshall equipment and teacher training. I have extended two schools clubs for extra weeks.

My problem lies within our NGB not being in a position to provide coach education for the schools/clubs. Without the qualified coaches etc I cannot undertake the work. That is the responisbility of our NGB and to sit and tell me that no more can be done until September is disgraceful and an indicment on the standard of the NGB.
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Postby Smoke » Sun Jul 09, 2006 11:45 am

Why do you find that disgraceful? Fill me in. I see an organization that has a budget and a calendar they have to answer to.
The issue here is that the NGB is a government organization because of the connection with the lottery funding. No one was smart enough to maintain the boundaries when the funding came around.
As for your coaches eliminate the NGB. You will continually run into problems because once again the NGB will focus on the faces of the org. which is the elite athletes. You have to develop another level of coaching, similar to what the NCAA has done her ein the States. USATF has their coaching levels and the NCAA has theirs.
You are dealing with schools, your coaching education needs are completely different. You are talking developing athletes v. fine tuning elites or at least those thought to be worth it. A school coach may run across one of these athletes once every 10 years if lucky.
I think all you need from the NGB is the proper accreditations for your programs, a certain degree of funding, and branding. Outside of these things the NGB is too large and cumbersome to accomodate you.
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Postby athletic coach » Sun Jul 09, 2006 4:54 pm

UKA took over coach education and has over the last few years consistently failed to produce the goods. Whether it is a basic level one course, children in athletics or a level 5 course (which after many years they have failed to produce). If you went on to the UKA web site and looked at the courses avaialble you would see that they do not have a consistent program which would allow coaches to develop. I have now been told that since they intend to hand over coach development to English Athletics in September nothing can be done until then.

The budget is of no importance in this instance as an offer has been made to cover all costs involved. The NGB is not a government body nor is it supposed to be aligned to any government, it is a separate organisation.

The schools will only accept accredited UKA coaches with the relevant licence and CRB checks done for child protection.

So I have a dilemma dramatically reduce our development program, tell the school to go to another sport or ?
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Postby Power-of-ten-man » Sun Jul 09, 2006 5:09 pm

Choke! I agree with most of all that, SMOKE , CHOKE!


Hi Athletics coach, be careful that you do not become to succesful or they will make you sign a contract. I have to laugh at this situation, because UKA have just fast tracked 30 athletes into coaching and they cannot/will not help people like you revive the dying grass roots, makes me sick.

UKA only want to make an impressive looking elitist body, well this will never happen because the best will not get involved with them, only those who think they are the best, these types never make it on their athletes performances, so have to join a power base to appear to be good?
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Postby Athetesmum » Sun Jul 09, 2006 5:18 pm

Hi athletic coach- in a previous posting you state that:-

"Next year we shall see a reduction in the number of the teams competing at all levels and the reduction in the number of leagues and divisions. "

Is this a FACT and you have inside knowledge to such happenings?

If not, is this what you would like to see happen or just a general concensus of views from people you have spoken to?
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Postby athletic coach » Sun Jul 09, 2006 8:59 pm

If you look around the leagues and see the amount of teams with only two or three team members, especially in the senior mens leagues and the womens league then it is very clear that something has to give.

This year we have seen a number of teams not starting matches due to problems in getting teams out.

So if you look at the leagues where theere are very small teams (I have competed in one league where two people compete for one team and three for another.)

We have seen over the last ten years, football, rugby and other spoprts league flourish supported by great media coverage and the investment into grassroots, unfortunately we have not.
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