Basketball |27 September 2023
Mixed feelings as local basketball community pays tribute to late coach Clifford Joubert
Victoria Gymnasium was filled with mixed emotions on Sunday as the local basketball community, both past and present players, along with fans and enthusiasts, came together to bid farewell and pay tribute to late coach Clifford Joubert during two charity tribute matches for his long and loyal contributions to local basketball.
The special event which attracted a huge crowd, despite the gloomy weather with constant rain, was an initiative of a group of basketball lovers, headed by Faizel Naiken and Tracey Moustache, as a sign of appreciation for coach Joubert’s involvement in the sport of basketball as a player, coach, and father-figure to a lot of young players whom he took under his wings, moulding them into future players, as well as exemplary individuals in society.
The first match featured the 1993 Indian Ocean Islands Games (IOIG) women’s selection who won the silver medal under the guidance of coach Joubert, against Anse Etoile Stars who excelled, also under his leadership to be nick-named ‘Queens of the court’ in the late 80s through the 90s.
It was fun to see the former generation of female players, in the likes Thyra Boniface, Jeanine Lawen, Genevieve Beaudoin, Gerina Sammy and Lindy Morel (formerly Aglae) battling against younger players such as Nisha Cafrine, Ella Dugasse of the Anse Etoile Stars.
Compared to the normal matches, the final score was not the highlight of the match which was played over two 20-minute halves.
As for the second match, it featured all generations of PLS Hawks – past and present – against some of the 2011 IOIG gold medal winners, along with other players who played and grew under coach Joubert.
Again, those present were happy to see some old faces back on the basketball court after years of absence.
After the matches, all the proceeds collected were handed over to coach Joubert’s widow Janette and his son Ronny, formerly an Anse Etoile player but who was playing for Plaisance on Sunday.
According to Mr Naiken, they are very happy and satisfied with the turn-out, despite the last minute planning, noting that they are confident that the Victoria Gymnasium would have been packed, if it was not for the rain.
Mr Naiken noted that once again, it has been proven that sports can really bring a nation together, especially in time like this, where the family really needs the support after losing a loved one.
This, he said, is a replica of last year’s tribute match to honour ex-PLS Hawks and Seychelles international player Daniel ‘Yellow’ Victor who left us following a road traffic accident.
Clifford Joubert’s legacies include Seychelles’ men only gold medal at the IOIG in 2011 on home soil after defeating Mayotte in the final, and a women’s silver medal, again on home soil in 1993.