Guernsey’s Commonwealth Games Achievers Reflect on Uncertain Times

Lucy Beere, who clinched a silver medal in bowls, and Alastair Chalmers, the 400m hurdler who secured bronze in Birmingham during the 2022 Commonwealth Games, share their apprehension about the future of the prestigious event.

The Commonwealth Games represent the pinnacle of international competition for Guernsey, but the event’s continuity is now in doubt. Recent developments include Victoria and Gold Coast withdrawing from hosting the 2026 games and Alberta abandoning its bid for 2030.

Call for Clarity

Beere, expressing the sentiments of many athletes, stresses the importance of a prompt decision regarding the fate of the games. “We need to know if we need to get qualifying times and standards, so it would be nice to know even if it’s on or if it’s not because then you can work your seasons out on what you have to enter and what you don’t have to enter,” she stated in an interview with BBC Radio Guernsey. “It would be good if they just made a decision, yes or no.”

Chalmers, the first Guernsey athlete to claim an athletics medal, echoes these concerns and worries about the potential delay to 2027. “If there isn’t a Games in 2026, or if they push it back to 2027, it would be a huge disappointment and a real shame for all the countries competing especially the little ones,” he emphasized.

Hope for the Future

While acknowledging the complexities behind the scenes, Chalmers remains optimistic that a solution will emerge. “It might be another city in Australia or the UK, but I think 2026 is looking quite unlikely. It’s not even that far away now, so hopefully, it can still happen, even in 2027.”

Beere emphasizes the significance of the Commonwealth Games to smaller nations like Guernsey. “The Commonwealth Games is a massive thing for me. I’ve been to four and medalled. We had 28 athletes out of however many there last year, and two from Guernsey got medals. You just can’t put that into words,” she said, highlighting the impact of the Games on athletes from nations that may not have the opportunity to compete at a similar level regularly.

 

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