France cops silver at Latin American veteran c/ships

If teen boppers such as Christopher Franklin and Trenace Lowe think they have a monopoly on local table tennis, they had better think again. Veteran racquet wielder Colin France has just secured this country’s first ever medal at the Latin American Veterans and Masters Championships in Margarita Islands, Venezuela and now the Guyana Table Tennis Association (GTTA) says it has every intention of regularly featuring the blasts from the past. At a press conference yesterday at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall France displayed his hardware for the media while handing over a plaque of participation to Director of Sport Neil Kumar. France won silver in the Men’s Singles 50-59 age group losing in the finals to Ricardo De Armas, a Cuban who now campaigns in Venezuela. “It was the first time in the three-year history of the championships that Guyana has participated and I am pleased to have gone there and done fairly well,” France said. Giving an account of his outing in the finals, France said he and Armas were tied at three games apiece and he was ahead in the final set when there was a power outage. “It was funny the timing of the blackout as it broke all my concentration and rhythm,” the veteran said. He went on to lose that deciding set 11-13 for a 4-3 overall loss. He also copped a bronze when he was allowed to partner a Brazilian in the 40-49 age group Men’s Doubles event. Kumar praised the efforts of France saying that at the next outing he would hear nothing of partnering with any other country as Guyana will be sending a much stronger contingent and not a lone representative. “I want to congratulate the GTTA for representing Guyana so well. It is good to see older athletes being given the opportunity to keep participating,” Kumar added. GTTA Secretary Godfrey Munroe said the veteran players will continue to be part of the association’s focus. “We had invited several other veteran players but they are focused on the US Open and could not make it to Venezuela. Colin went and did us proud and this shows that older players can still participate in competitive table tennis,” Monroe said. He thanked the Department of Sport for its continued support and pledged to bring better results to Guyana. Munroe also announced that the Annual General Meeting of the GTTA has been set for November 17 at which time all the business of the association will be dealt with including the election of office bearers.

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