BARBADIAN JUNIOR TEAMS KEEP WINNING STREAK GOING
Both the Barbados girls and boys teams racked up impressive wins in their respective round robin ties on the second day of the team competition in the 34th annual Caribbean Junior Squash Championships being held this year at the South Sound Squash Club in Grand Cayman.
In the boys Pool B, Barbados is matched up with Trinidad and Tobago, Bermuda and the OECS, and yesterday (Wednesday) it was the Trinidadian team that fell to the dominant team in blue, black and gold as Barbados romped home by five matches to nil. Boy’s team captain, Benjamin Griffith, easily dispatched Chad Salandy in the U-19 #1 slot: 11/3, 11//2, 11/4 and in the U-19 #2 position his fellow southpaw, Zachary Proverbs-Harris dropped the second game to Jonathan Blanc but then galloped home in four games 11/4, 5/11, 11/8, 11/5. The third left hander in the team, Reggie Brewster, (BU-17) overcame Nicholas Caddle, also in four games 11/1, 11/5, 10/12, 11/1 and Barbados’ reigning Caribbean U-15 champion, Khamal Cumberbatch easily defeated Christopher Anthony 11/1, 11/3, 11/2. Boys under-13 silver medalist, Darien Benn, won a tight first game, then lost concentration in the second, but thereafter was in complete control and closed out Trinidadian Seth Thong in four games: 11/9, 1/11, 11/3, 11/4 to seal the 5-0 victory for Barbados. In the other Pool B tie the OECS defeated Bermuda 3-2 who are now in fourth place in that group and are out of contention for a semi-final berth.
In Pool A, the defending boys champions Guyana faced Jamaica, who put up a great fight before going down by two matches to three. That result leaves Jamaica out of semi-final contention in this pool of three teams and Guyana will now face Cayman later today (Thursday) to determine who will top that group and avoid Barbados in the semi-final cross over that will be played tomorrow (Friday).
In the evening session yesterday (Wednesday), the Barbados girls team took to the court versus Jamaica and were given an early scare as the Jamaicans took both U-19 matches against much younger Barbadian opponents, with Alyssa Mullins beating 13-year old Chelsie Samuel, 11/5, 11/1, 11/5 and Mia Mahfood defeating 14-year old Jada Smith-Padmore 7/11, 11/9, 11-6, 11/6. So at one stage Jamaica actually held a 2-1 lead in the tie. But with a trio of individual champions to call upon the Bajan lasses were never really in any danger and this lead was short lived as Sumairaa Suleman (U-13), Meagan Best (U-15) and Amanda Haywood (U-17) dropped just five points between them in their respective encounters. Suleman won at love, love and love against Alia Haddad. Best won 11/2, 11/1 and 11/0 versus Mia Lake and Haywood won 11/0, 11/1, 11/1 against Leah Robotham to give Barbados its second victory in the six team round robin.
Three more days of team competition for the boys and girls remain. The defending champions and top seeded Barbadian girls play against hosts Cayman this afternoon, while later on this evening the #2 seeded boys team will face Bermuda, and will be looking to win this encounter and top pool B.
There are over 110 players from seven different Caribbean countries (Barbados; Bermuda; Guyana, Jamaica; the OECS; Trinidad and Tobago and hosts Cayman Islands) participating this year’s Caribbean Junior Squash Championships which will end on Saturday evening July 23rd. The Barbados team of 19 players and officials and over 20 parents and supporters will return home from Cayman via Miami this Sunday night July 24th with an estimated arrival time at GAIA of 10:36 p.m.
Further information on the tournament and more photos can be found at www.casasquash.com
(The attached photos of the two Barbadian junior teams are courtesy of Steve Cubbins and www.squashsite.co.uk)