World Champion James Gets Highway Honour

St. George's (Grenada), Oct 15 (IANS/CMC): There will be a Kirani James Boulevard named after the 400 metres world champion athlete in Grenada soon, Prime Minister Tillman Thomas announced here.

A highway leading south out of the capital in an area now referred to as Lagoon Road will be renamed, Thomas revealed in a televised address Thursday night.

"Our international athletes have demonstrated great prowess on the world track and field circuit, bringing a sense of immeasurable pride and joy to all Grenadians, as well as the wider Caribbean," the leader stated.

"Their outstanding performances on the track both in Daegu and Europe have also brought incredible recognition to us as a small island developing state."

James won Grenada's first ever World Championship medal last August in Daegu, South Korea when he captured the 400 metres event as an 18-year-old and just a month after he turned professional.

The CARIFTA, World Junior and World Youth champion, who has since turned 19, is still a freshman at the University of Alabama.

James's working class parents will be given new homes, in a package of awards and honours, Thomas announced. A parcel of land will be given to James and Rondel Bartholomew, who was also a finalist in the 400 metres.

Meanwhile, house repair assistance will be given to the parents of female athlete Janelle Redhead who made it to the quarter-finals in the women's 400 metres.

"For small countries like ours, opportunities to celebrate athletic excellence of this magnitude are very few," the prime minister said.

"Therefore, when such an unprecedented opportunity one presents itself, it must be embraced with gratitude and duly rewarded."

Thomas also announced housing assistance for the parents of James's first coach, Albert Joseph, and first Grenadian Olympic finalist, Alleyne Francique, who placed fourth in Athens seven years ago.

Francique, who is coaching at a university in the United States, will be invited to Grenada to attend an official awards ceremony and a roundabout in St. George's will be named in his honour.

"In due course, the special committee will inform the nation as to the plans for our athlete's home coming," Thomas said.

"We are convinced that more of our athletes in all sporting disciplines will emerge to take centre stage on the world circuit."


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Title: World Champion James Gets Highway Honour

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