Barrackpore United SC is Community Clash Champ
The rain and mud did not dampen the excitement of the hundreds of spectators and community teams that vied for the top prize at the blink/bmobile Olympic Community Clash staged last Sunday at the Barrackpore Recreational Ground. It was a riotous affair.
Thirty-six-year-old contractor and team captain Josh Dhanesar and the Barrackpore United Sports Club (BUSC) approached the event like a team on a mission. BUSC, like the seven other mixed male and female teams that competed, selected a charity close to their hearts to donate the $10,000 prize money. "The Valley Line Early Childhood Centre has 42 students attending but no computers. Our team members are familiar with the needs of the Centre and we decided that if we won, we would use the winning prize to buy computers for them," said Dhanesar. He confessed however, that it was easier said than done as each of the other teams had equally compelling reasons to play hard for their favourite charity.
Where speed, agility, balance, coordination and co-operation could have tilted the scale in anyone's favour, the soggy conditions literally levelled the playing field, much to the amusement of supporters. In fact, the conditions were perfect for the challenge events that included group sprints, skiing, tug-of-war, mud crawls and shooting hoops. Adding to the excitement, Brian Lara and Barrackpore's very own Darren Ganga immersed themselves in the activities. In the end, Josh Dhanesar and the Barrackpore United Sports Club walked away with the top prize much to the delight of the teachers and students of the Valley Line Early Childhood Centre. The X Men sports club placed second and Valley Line Sports Club rounded out the top three teams. Then it was time to celebrate and Shal Marshall and Shurwayne Winchester knew just how to get the crowd moving.
"Seeing so many of the older cubs in the community as well as the residents coming out on a Sunday, this event made people nostalgic for the times when this type of gathering was a common occurrence" said Dhanesar. "No one expected that the Community Clash would have this kind of impact and a number of us are actually thinking of ways to continue the momentum this competition has created. People were saying how much they missed getting the community together and looking out for neighbours in need."
The third and final clash takes place today from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Mason Hall, Tobago.