Assistant Secretary of the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) Marie Tavares says Hydel athlete Shenese Walker and her handlers must accept some of the blame for not being at the NACAC Under-18 Championships in Mexico. Walker was forced to miss out on the championships because her initial flight was booked through the US despite her not having a valid US visa.
Speaking on Hitz 92 FM's Sports Grill on Wednesday, Hyde’sl coach Corey Bennett explained that Walker did indicate on her entry form that she had a US visa but that it would have expired in May of 2019. But Tavares says that was overlooked.
Bennett was also incensed by the fact that he was told that the cost of changing the flights at the last minute would have been too much for the JAAA. However, Tavares says they had to make the best financial decision.
“Putting her through the States, we had already spent $200,000 and at the time, if we had put her through Panama because of the seats that were available, the two fares would add up to over $500,000 and the federation just cannot afford it,” said Tavares.