Meakins on course
Bajan squash queen makes caribbean finals
Local squash queen Karen Meakins booked her place in final four of the 22nd Senior Caribbean Squash Championships, slated for tonight at the Barbados Squash Club.
Installed as the pre-tournament favourite in the absence of defending champion and world No. 19 Nicolette Fernandes of Guyana, the reigning 14-time national champion comfortably disposed of Akelia Wiltshire in straight games to confirm her place in the semi-finals of the Caribbean’s premier squash tournament.
Buoyed by home support, Meakins wasted little time against the youthful Guyanese, beating the left-hander in straight games 11-2, 11-6, 11-3. Barbados’ best will now face Wiltshire’s compatriot, Ashley DeGroot who defeated Eilidh Bridgeman of the Cayman Islands 11-9, 14-12, 11-6 in the quarters.
Bridgeman had earlier defeated local player Alex Jordan in a marathon match that ended 9-11, 11-9, 12-10, 7-11, and 11-7.
“I’m feeling good and I’ve played some solid squash so far,” said Meakins, the 2010 National Sportsperson Of The Year.
“But you can’t underestimate any of these girls. This tournament is stacked with the best players from around the region, and while I’m quietly confident of getting the job done, I’m just taking it one game at a time.”
Nadia McCarthy, who along with Meakins was representing Barbados in the quarters, was unsuccessful in her bid to unseat No. 2 seed Mary Fung-A-Fat of Guyana, dropping the match 7-11, 11-1, 11-0, 11-8. Fung-A-Fat was set to face compatriot Victoria Arjoon in the semis after the 18-year-old defeated Brooke Burrowes of Jamaica 12-10, 6-11, 11-9, 15-13.
Among the men, Shawn Simpson was the lone Barbadian to make an appearance in the final eight.
Coming up against Richard Chin, Simpson was unable to overcome the effects of a sore shoulder and surrendered to the Guyanese veteran in straight games 11-5, 11-7, 11-6. Chin will now face defending four-time champion Chris Binnie, the Jamaican winning a close encounter with Micah Franklin of Bermuda 11-6, 7-11, 11-3, 5-11, 11-7.
In the bottom half of the draw, Sunil Seth of Guyana wasted little effort in an 11-2, 11-5, 11-8 demolition of Trinidad and Tobago’s Colin Ramasra. The No. 2 seed will now face Cameron Stafford of the Cayman Islands who defeated Guyanese national champion Alex Arjoon 11-6, 11-8, 4-11, 11-4.
In the Women’s Plate, Alex Jordan was scheduled to oppose junior standout Amanda Haywood in an all-Barbadian quarterfinal. Also qualifying for the final eight was Ruth Deane-Webster.