GBSPA calls off boxing tourneys

BOXING SERIES CANCELLED – The Grand Bahama Sports Promotion Association’s (GBSPA) proposed three-part boxing series has been officially canceled for 2020, inclusive of the proposed Independence Boxing Invitational.

The Grand Bahama Sports Promotion Association’s (GBSPA) proposed three-part boxing series has been officially canceled for 2020, inclusive of the proposed Independence Boxing Invitational. 

The announcement was made by the President Fred Sturrup earlier this week. The GBSPA held several meetings since announcing back in March that the 2020 schedule had been postponed due to the emergency orders put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

A boxing event was to take place this month, another in July and one in October. Because of the "uncertainty regarding gatherings," according to Sturrup at a recent meeting it was decided to cancel all of the boxing events and focus tentatively just on the Edward St. George Memorial Golf Invitational, scheduled for November.

Although the government has allowed the re-opening of the country in phases starting this month, certain restrictions will still be in place prohibiting gatherings, social distancing being an ongoing priority. 

“It looks like the lockdown is going to continue into the end of May. However, some aspects of the emergency order, no doubt, are still going to be in place throughout June. It doesn’t appear that it’s going to be a normalized situation in July. 

“So, we decided to cancel the Independence boxing event. We had said earlier that it might be postponed, but we decided, now, that’s not going to work,” said Sturrup. 

Thus, to concentrate on the Edward St. George Memorial Golf Invitational. With hopes of normalcy, that event has been earmarked, now, to take place in November or early December, 2020. 

“That’s the only thing that seems to make sense to focus on at this point in time. It just looks like things are not going to be normalized fully anytime soon, and if so, not until around the end of the year. 

“The only thing we’re focusing on, tentatively, now is the ESG Memorial Golf Invitational,” he further stated.

That tournament will be of the four-man team format. 

The GBSPA was in close communication with the African-American Golfers’ Hall of Fame (AAG) in West Palm Beach, Florida, about a junior golf exchange program. Details of the initiative were scheduled to be discussed during the early year golf tournament scheduled for March (which had to be called off).

“We’ve already spoken to them (AAG) and they understand the circumstances. They know, and the general is we’ll renew those talks when people can travel. That will, hopefully, be some time during the new year.”

In regards to the juniors playing in the tournament, Sturrup explained. "To me, it would have made sense if we could have put a junior segment in there to accommodate the crew out of West Palm Beach.”

“I’d rather wait until such time, when can do that, depending on travel options. The preference, mine and my colleagues for sure, is that we just focus on the regular ESG Tournament. Then, everything pertaining to the juniors, we’ll think about that in 2021. That’s where we’re at now.”

Sturrup closed by disclosing that the second testimonial banquet will also be cancelled. 

“What that calls for is a gathering of a lot of people. We talked about that in particular, and we just had to acknowledge that such an event can’t be in the mix right now. The golf tournament is different because you don’t have to mingle that much. But even that is only tentative, but at least right now, that’s the one thing (ESG tournament) we can focus on.”  

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