President of the Guyana Table Tennis Association (GTTA) Godfrey Munroe yesterday lauded his players for enduring weeks of hard training and said that he’s backing them to do well in the upcoming Pan American Junior Championships which begins in Canada this week.
The 2016 Pan American Junior Championships is a new event on the calendar of the International Table Tennis Federation and the upcoming tournament to be held in Burnaby, British Columbia, will serve as a qualification tournament for this year’s World Junior Championships in Cape Town, South Africa from November 30 – December 7.
The tournament which is set to start on Saturday affords the Top four teams a chance to compete at the World’s and Munroe told Stabroek Sport yesterday, that while the competition in the upcoming event is stiff, he expects his team to give good account of itself.
“It’s a real critical tournament. It’s the first Junior Pan Am table tennis competition and our team qualified at the last Caribbean Championship in Santo Domingo placing second with their bronze medal,” he said.
Guyana’s hopes of doing well lie with Shemar Britton, Miguel Wong, Elishaba Johnson and Kyle Edghill, accompanied by Coach Linden Johnson, who Munroe credited for working with the team during some demanding hours.
“For the last two months they have been training intensively heading into the tournament and because of school as well as the availability of the Sports Hall they had to train from 9:00hrs in the night to about 11:00hrs daily and that’s commendable,” said the GTTA president.
The GTTA boss believed that it was very imperative that the aforementioned players move forward to the senior level, as it not only helps to boost their personal portfolio but the
world ranking of the country will also progress.
“If we want to start making an impact we need find ways and help them so they can do well in key competitions. The effort the guys been showing is commendable and apart from this, we also want to start a training camp to help them transition into the senior level.
“These current players represent the nucleus of the younger generation of players. They are a very talented bunch and I think they just need the exposure at the international area and eventually all system will be in place for them,” he declared.
Apart from the players getting themselves fine-tuned for the competition, the GTTA is also wrapping up some last minute provisions which Munroe said should be completed by Thursday. He is asking the public to help support the young team who is eyeing history, saying the GTTA will welcome any support from the public in ensuring that the association can better ensure their players are well prepared heading to Canada.
The GTTA President said that persons interested in supporting the team can contact him on 686-7473. The team is expected to leave for Canada on Friday.
The Guyana team reads: Shemar Britton, Miguel Wong, and Elishaba Johnson and Kyle Edghill. The Coach is Linden Johnson and Manager Deidre Edghill.