Squashed!

BEST MAKES SHORT SHRIFT OF REGION'S NO. 1 SEED

A highly competitive Barbados junior squash team has one focus in mind and that is to take a clean sweep at the 34th staging of the Caribbean Amateur Squash Association’s Regional Junior Squash Tournament to be held in the Cayman Islands from July 14 to 24.

During yesterday’s Sagicor General National Junior Squash Championship finals, held at the Squash Club, Marine Gardens, Christ Church, there were several top performances from some of those who will be in the Cayman Islands. Among them were the victorious regional under-17 king Shemane Griffith and the highly talented under-15 queen, Meagan Best. Barbados coach Rhett Cumberbatch said he was happy with what he’d seen so far from his charges during the championships.

Meagan Best on her way to a great victory against Caribbean junior number one seed and reigning under-17 champion, Amanda Haywood.
Meagan Best on her way to a great victory against Caribbean junior number one seed and reigning under-17 champion, Amanda Haywood.

“The team is much stronger this year compared to last year and we have been hard at training this week in an effort to get everyone in shape for junior CASA,” said Cumberbatch, while pointing out that even though the team had not been finalised he was confident that those from last year would once again represent the Broken Tridents.

One of the major highlights from yesterday’s local championship came when Best defeated Caribbean junior number one seed and reigning under-17 champion, Amanda Haywood, 11-7, 11-6 and 11-6 in the best of three sets final. The 14-year-old also won her required age group in convincing fashion 11-2, 11-3 and 11-3 when she played Jada Smith- Padmore in the under-15 division. Smith-Padmore eventually redeemed herself by taking third in the under-17 and Chelsie Samuel took third place in the under-15.

Best told Barbados TODAY she had been hard at training after placing runner-up to Haywood for the past few years and now that she’s been victorious against her St Michael School colleague it was an overwhelming feeling.

“I have been working on my fitness, a lot more endurance, and winning against Amanda, I really overcame my fear and it feels good now that I have won,” said Best who added she has trained six days per week in preparation for CASA.

The Barbados team came close to winning the overall team title at home last year when they won the girls’ title and the boys came second to powerhouses Guyana who repeated as champions for an unprecedented 11th year in succession.

The hard-hitting Griffith also looked in great form when he featured in two age groups starting with the under-17 which he won easily 11-5, 11-5, 11-5 against Joshua Seale.

He then returned to court against his brother Benjamin Griffith in the under-19 final and as expected the two were locked in an intense battle that went Benjamin’s way 7-11, 11-6, 11-5 and 11-8. Khamal Cumberbatch was third, winning 11-9, 11-9, 3-11 and 11-3 playing against Haywood.

Shemane said he was as ready as could be for the upcoming championship but needed to train more consistently.

“The other guys are training and I need to keep up. Even though I am at school I still get to train with my team everyday for about two hours but mostly I am going to try and work on my fitness because that has been down from me being sick recently but outside of that I should be good,” he said.

The under-19 Classic Plate went to Zachary Proverbs-Harris who smashed Christian Armstrong 11-4, 11-8 and 11-1.

Khamal Cumberbatch as expected starred in the under-15 boys category when he won 11-8, 11-3 and 11-6 playing Seale. Chemar Burnham got the better of Ryan Archer 11-7, 11-3 and 11-7 for third spot. Meanwhile the Classic Plate in that division went to Kemar Lord 11-4, 11-5 and 11-3 playing against Dominic Jordan.

In the under-13 open, Darien Benn was victorious over Alex Stewart 12-10, 11-9 and 12-10 but was made to fight for every point. Sumairaa Suleman defeated Aidan Parris 11-9, 11-4 and 11-6 for the third place win.

Both Stewart and Parris competed in the under-11 final and Stewart came out on top 12-10, 11-13, 11-6 and 11-7. Marcus Jordan rounded out the top three by winning 11-3, 11-5 and 11-0 against Rebekah Nichols. Jules O’Garro then made light work of Theodore Hagley 11-4, 11-5 and 11-3.

Stewart took the Richard Walcott Award for sportsmanship, which was personally presented to the young player by Walcott, a former national player.

Following action on the courts, players were presented with their trophies and awards by Sagicor General executive Roger Spencer who praised them for good conduct and a high level of play during the three-day championships.

“We wish to commend all players who participated in the championships for their high level of play and also the Barbados Squash Association for good organisation of the tournament. I can say that we will certainly be sponsoring the national junior championships again in 2017,” said Spencer.

Final day results

Open Under-19:

Final:  Benjamin Griffith def. Shemane Griffith – ……………………………………………7-11 11-6 11-5 11-8 .

Plate -Final: Zachary Harris def. Christian Armstrong – ……………………………….11-4 11-8 11-1 .

3rd place play-off: – Khamal Cumberbatch def. Amanda Haywood -……………11-9 11-9 3-11 11-3 .

Boys Under 17:

Final – Shemane Griffith def. Joshua Seale – ……………………………………………………11-5 11-5 11-5 .

Plate-Final : Christian Armstrong def. Ryan Archer -…………………………………….11-6 11-4 11-4 .

Boys Under-15:

Final: Khamal Cumberbatch def. Joshua Seale – ……………………………………………..11-8 11-3 11-6 .

Plate Final: Kemar Lord def. Dominic Jordan – ………………………………………………11-4 11-5 11-3 .

3rd place play-off: Chemar Burnham def. Ryan Archer – ………………………………11-7 11-3 11-7 .

Open Under-13:

Final: Darien Benn def. Alex Stewart – …………………………………………………………..12-10 11-9 12-10 .

Plate-Final: Chelsie Samuel def. Javan Seale – …………………………………………………11-2 11-2 11-4 .

3rd place play-off: Sumairaa Suleman def. Aidan Parris – ………………………………11-9 11-4 11-6 .

Open Under-11

Final: Alex Stewart def. Aidan Parris – ……………………………………………………………12-10 11-13 11-6 11-7 .

Plate -Final : Jules O’Garro def. Theodore Hagley – ………………………………………11-4 11-5 11-3 .

3rd place play-off: Marcus Jordan def. Rebekah Nichols – ……………………………..11-3 11-5 11-0 .

Girls Under-15:

Final: Meagan Best def. Jada Smith-Padmore – ………………………………………………..11-2 11-3 11-3 .

3rd place play-off : Chelsie Samuel def. Sumairaa Suleman – …………………………11-8 11-8 11-8 .

Girls Under-17

Final: Meagan Best def. Amanda Haywood – ………………………………………………….11-7 11-6 11-6 .

3rd place play-off: Jada Smith-Padmore def. Jodi Smith-Padmore – ………………12-10 11-7 11-6 .

One Response to Squashed!

  1. Grace Fergusson
    Grace Fergusson March 21, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    Hats off to you Meagan.

    Reply

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