Guyana’s National Mini-Cadet (11 years and under) and Pre-Cadet (13 years and under) table tennis contingents departed these local shores yesterday for the Dominican Republic, to contest the 2019 Caribbean Mini- and Pre-Cadet Championships scheduled for August 19-27.
In an exclusive interview with Guyana Times Sport, one of the appointed coaches, Dwain Dick, said in response to a question regarding preparedness of the team: “I think that we have done almost everything there was to do in terms of preparation.
“For the past month, we have been practising at least two times a week, and have really been pushing those hours in. The tournament will commence on Wednesday; therefore, we have been giving us a few practice sessions before the game to become acquainted with the table and the venue.
“In order for the team to be successful, there must be that cohesiveness. It’s all about them gelling together and coming out on top.”
Guyana’s representatives, a very formidable group of players, includes National 13, 18 and 15-years-and-under Boys’ Champion Jonathan Van Lange.
The talented Colin Wong, Krystian Sahadeo and Dhanesh Persaud, who are all in their fourth and final cycle of competing at the Mini- and Pre-Cadet levels, will form Guyana’s Under-13 Boys’ team.
The team also consists of the Boys’ 11-years-and-under player Malachi Moore, who is currently in the Dominican Republic participating in the World Hopes Caribbean training camp; and the fast-improving and energetic Ebo Mc Neil (debutant Linden).
The Under-11 Girls’ team consists of national 11- &13-years-and-under Girls’ Champion Jasmine Billingy; as well as the talented Akira Watson and the tenacious Samara Sukhai, who are strong candidates for possible medal performances.
The teams will be coached by Shavin Greene and Dwain Dick, with assistance from Colin France.
At last year’s event, a total of 7 countries participated, including Guyana. Guyana was able to bag silver medals in the U-13 Boys’ Doubles, which saw Kaysan Ninvalle and Jonathan Van Lange taking to the podium.
In the entire competition, Guyana placed 5th with 230 points. The 2019 edition of the tournament will see Guyana aiming to be among the top three, and trying to medal in most of the categories.
The competing teams include Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Aruba, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, St Lucia, and St Vincent & the Grenadines.
The major sponsors of these teams include Beacon Café, Payless Variety Store and Ready Mix Concrete Ltd.