In an interview in the Gleaner last week, Kemar Bailey-Cole said that there could more athletes moving to the east, but many were not speaking. He said the financial returns will tempt many athletes struggling in a sport in which only the top few really make it big.
There were even rumors that Olympic and World Championship gold, silver and bronze medalist Warren Weir was on his way as well.
Winston Barnes, formerly of Jamaica College has now joined the eastern exodus and has decided to don the red and white colors of Turkey. Barnes I am told, is from Freeman’s Hall in South Trelawny.
By the way, contrary to the report in Loop Jamaica below, Turkey is not an Arab country. It is Muslim, located partially in Europe and partially in Asia.
This moves follows the news last week, that three athletes had switched allegiance to Bahrain.
It is a serious situation, in a time when people appear to hold loyalty to nothing but the “almighty dollar,” Loyalty to country “cannot pay the bills” is the common comment from fans. We would therefore not be surprised to hear more ‘defections’ in the coming weeks before World Championships.
It seems that the Arab exodus is officially in full swing as former Jamaica College sprinter Winston Barnes has switched his allegiance to represent Turkey.
Barnes, who will now be known as Emre Zafer Barnes, is the latest Jamaican athlete to switch allegiance to a represent another country.
Barnes will now don the white and red of the Turkish instead of his native black green and gold colours, joining fellow Jamaican Jacques Harvey who made the switch last year.
This follows shocking announcements by Jamaica’s Olympic Games silver medallist Shericka Williams, along with Andrew Fisher and Kemarley Brown, who all requested a switch of allegiance to the oil-rich state of Bahrain.
All three athletes train at the local-based MVP club.
In recent years, a number of Jamaica athletes have switched allegiance with the most recent being earlier this year when former Wolmer’s Boys’ sprinter Jacques Harvey started representing Turkey as Jak Ali Harvey.
Curatred from: Loop Jamaica