National table tennis ace Shemar Britton, Guyana’s highest ranked men’s player, emerged victorious over the weekend at the ICWI Table Tennis Silver Bowl TT Championships, which were held at the Eastern Regional Indoor Sports Arena in Tacarigua, Trinidad and Tobago.
Britton has said he is ecstatic over the victory and would be looking to improve his world rankings.
Fresh from his 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games sojourn, Britton was in great form when he defeated regional table tennis defensive maestro Barbadian Tyrese Knight by a 3-1 margin: 11-8, 11-9, 8-11, 11-6, in the men’s singles final. In a battle of the two top men’s table tennis players in the English-speaking Caribbean, Britton, representing Queen’s Park, used clever serves, varied attacks, and tactical precision, and showed great composure to defeat Knights in a very entertaining final.
The competition attracted 80 players, among whom were several international players. Enroute to the championships victory, Britton defeated Terry Corbin by a 3-0 margin (4,3,10) in the Round of 32; in the round of 16, he defeated Jamali Mauge by a 3-1 score (8,8-14,6); in the quarterfinals, he defeated Kenneth Paramand by a 3-1 margin (4,5,-9,19); and in the semifinals, he outlasted compatriot Jonathan Van Lange 11-5, 12-10, 11-5.
Knight got past Tobagonian Derron Douglas 11-3, 11-5, 4-11, 11-7.
Britton said in a statement when asked how it felt to win the title: “It feels amazing to win the ICWI Table Tennis Silver Bowl TT Championships in Trinidad, especially since I came up against such a quality field of opposition, featuring Tyrese Knight, Jonathan Van Lange, Nigel Bryan, among other top Trinidadian players. It is a testament to all the hard work that I have put in since the year started, the preparation for the year among other major events; so, to be back in the winners’ circle really fells amazing.”
Britton also said that the high point for him was the grand finale wherein he duked it out with Tyrese Knight, whom he deemed a strong opponent. He explained that he had met Knight in many finals and big tournaments, and pointed out that Knight had defeated him in their previous two encounters. So, defeating the talented Bajan was definitely a high point for the talented Britton.
“Moving forward again, my aim is to still improve all elements of my game and keep pushing the barriers and trying to raise my world ranking and achieve the top 150, top 100 status before the year-end,” he shared.
Guyana’s Jonathan Van Lange came third in the same tournament. Nigel Bryan, Krystian Sahadeo and Niran Bissu made it to the Round of 16, while Guyana’s Colin Wong exited in the group stage. Thuraia Thomas, competing in the women’s championships, made it to the quarterfinals of the Women’s singles, where she lost to finalist Imani Edwards Taylor.
Guyanese players are also participating in the ICWI league. Some players under the Titans banner are also participating in a training camp being hosted by the Carinage TT Club. It is being conducted by Edwin Humphreys, with Dwain Dick, ITTF level two coach, as the expert on duty.