Lacrosse needs big bucks
Jamaica Lacrosse Association (JLA) Vice-president Dwight Clarke says their drive to secure at least U$80,000 (J$ 9.9 million) in funding for their participation in their first-ever Lacrosse World Championship set for Israel in July has been very slow in coming.
“The funding part has been going slow, but we are ready to pick up steam,” Clarke said.
“We are looking for about U$80,000 (J$9.9 million) and that will take care of accommodation, airfare, gear and such.
“But that does not include the training camp. That (training camp) would take about another U$8000 (approximately J$100,000) for a week,” he said.
The relatively young JLA has received no help from outside sources, but it is trying to raise funds through merchandising to help its cause.
“We are doing online sale with T-shirts, hats, gear and such so people can buy or donate a U$10 or U$20 or how much they can. If online sales go good and people donate, we should be alright,” he said.
“The difficult part is getting funding. We have not reached out to any local company or any (local) sporting body. Everything we have done, we did on our own. We just need the support,” Clarke added.
VYING FOR WORLD CHAMPS SPOTS
Meanwhile, 18 local players are vying for six remaining spots in the World Championship squad. They will join up with the 18 overseas-based players that have already secured their place to Israel.
Not training regularly has not really affected the team’s preparation and Clarke says they are doing their best under the present circumstances.
“The overseas players will join later. If we had the funds they (overseas players) would have joined already. But we can’t ask them to come and things like accommodation, food, and transport are not fully in place. If we make enough money, we can put the team together for a week. But if not we will have to stay until the funding is in place and we can put them up for a week or a weekend,” he reasoned.
However, he argues that building team chemistry is not hard in Lacrosse.
“Lacrosse is not a sport like football where you take time to gel. You can gel in a few days but it’s a game that you have to trust your partner and once you trust your partner it is easy,” said Clarke.
The team trains once a week, but will look to increase the days as the championship gets closer.
“Our next training is at the weekend. We train once a week because of the unavailability of some persons. Some go to school, some work, and we can’t pay them, so we have to work with that once-a-week schedule,” he said.