TT BOXER Nigel Paul was elated to see his national team-mates and participate in the Queen’s Baton relay as for him it signifies the start of the 2022 Commonwealth Games countdown.
More than 15 athletes, former athletes and TT Olympic Committee officials walked through Port of Spain during the local leg of the Queen’s Baton relay, on Wednesday.
They made stops at Brian Lara Promenade, Trinity Cathedral, Red House and Queen’s Park Savannah, which included the Magnificent Seven.
The Queen’s Baton relay, which began on October 7 last year, travels around the world visiting 72 nations and territories before the games begin.
The games will be held from July 28-August 8.
The 2022 Commonwealth Games mascot, Perry, is accompanying the Queen’s Baton. Perry is a multi-coloured bull.
Super heavyweight boxer Nigel Paul, track and field athlete Kai Selvon, former World 400m hurdles champion Jehue Gordon, shooter Roger Daniel and women’s boxer Tianna Guy took part in the relay.
Paul said, “It is always a pleasure to be called upon to represent in whatever capacity, so being here with fellow team-mates and sportsmen it is really an encouragement I am sure to everybody here.”
When TT competes it is a family atmosphere Paul said and the Queen’s Baton relay would have helped the bond among the athletes.
“(It) kind of starts the ball rolling because when we go outside is just one big family…we just happy to see each other and wishing each other well.”
Discussing the relay, Selvon said, “I think it is a (great) experience for all the difference athletes to come out and support.”
Selvon even joked that the relay would have helped the national athletes build their fitness.
Selvon is anticipating the Commonwealth Games saying she is “looking forward to it.”
Senior administrative officer of the TT Commonwealth Games Association Lovie Santana said, “The objective of this (relay) is to showcase our beautiful island TT in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games.”
Santana, who will be the chef de mission for the TT team, expects the organisers to put on a memorable event for the TT athletes.
“Our athletes are in store for a really good, well-planned games.”