The boxing team paid a courtesy call to the TTOC yesterday at the TTOC head office on Abercromby Street, Port of Spain.
“We’re just here to show our thanks and regards to the president and other staff members of the Olympic Committee,” said TT boxing coach Floyd “The Fighting Postman” Trumpet.
Lewis congratulated the boxers but said their fight has just begun.
“I don’t want you to have a sense of entitlement,” he said. “It must be something that you enjoy and have a passion for. Representing your country (must) mean something to you. Once you continue to work hard, once you continue to have a vision as to where you want to go, once you continue to improve, and most of all, your demeanour (will speak) volumes.”
Lewis continued, “We want people to continue to invest in you. No matter how challenging things may be, you have to display class, integrity, determination and a willingness to overcome all obstacles to be the best you can be. If you continue working hard, good things will continue.” The TTOC boss promised to offer support to the boxing team in the immediate future.
“We would continue to help as best as we could,” said Lewis. We know that we have the Central American and Caribbean Games coming up in Barranquilla, Colombia next year, then we have the Pan Am Championships and then Tokyo 2020 (Olympics).”
Earlier, Lewis lauded the squad for their haul of six gold, three silver and one bronze.
“I think that was a tremendous return on the investment of the squad,” he noted. “I’ll like to extend congratulations on their success. Our commitment and support, to the best of our ability, is applied.”
Due to financial constraints, the TT squad travelling to St Lucia was trimmed from 35 to 11. “We are in some very challenging times,” he said, alluding to the reduction in the TT contingent. “Based on representations made by your coaches, the president of (the TT Boxing Association Cecil Forde) and Reynold Cox in particular, the TTOC availed itself to support.”
Lewis expressed his disappointment that 2016 Olympian heavyweight boxer Nigel Paul was unable to participate in St Lucia due to the lack of quality opponents. “But we look forward to his continued preparation for the Commonwealth Games (in Australia from April 4-15, 2018).”