More attention should be paid to school sports: Fredericks

23 Feb 2015 19:50pm
WINDHOEK, 23 FEB (NAMPA) – Namibia's Olympic silver medallist Frank Fredericks is calling on sports administrators to pay more attention to school sports.
He said this on Monday when the Frank Fredericks Foundation (FFF) handed over scholarships to the tune of N.dollars 59 000 to six talented athletes for academic and sports purposes.
Fredericks, the FFF chairperson, said his organisation has significantly contributed to the development of sports and education in the country, but a lot still need to be done.
For Namibia to have more athletes who can perform well at international event, focus should be brought back to school sports where young athletes can be groomed at an early age, he said.
The former sprinter noted that a lot of human power and capital is needed.
“If one is to win a medal at the Olympics you need to at least spend around N.dollars 1.5 million per individual and this can be done while these athletes are still young, and when they are 24 years old then they can compete well.
At the moment one thing that is missing is coaches who can guide these athletes, just like how fortunate I was during my school days,” said Fredericks.
He said his teachers at the time dedicated their time training athletes after classes and study time.
“But in today's teachers are more focused on their curricula than training athletes after school. More talented athletes are now sourcing coaches out of their school premises and that becomes a bit of a problem, seeing that not every learner can afford to have a private coach,” he stated.
This year the FFF gave bursaries to Jhundre Eiseb for gymnastics; Sune Engelbrecht for shot put and discus; Ismael Tjiramba for 100 metres and 200 metres sprints, Gabriel Shikondi for golf; and Frankie Katanga and Vi-Ally Basson for community sports.