The Guyana Squash Association (GSA) is all set to host the Caribbean Area Squash Association Junior Championships (CASA) which runs from July 1 – 9 with ongoing rehabilitation works at the two main venues expected to host the championships.
Vice – president of the GSA, David Fernandes, told Stabroek Sport that the GSA is working in conjunction with the National Sports Commission (NSC) and the management of the Georgetown Club squash court to have the city venues in ideal shape for the championships which will commence in three weeks’ time.
“We are working in partnership with the National Sports Commiss-ion (NSC) to do some small renovations to the National Racquet Center which will be one of the places hosting the tournament. The other location is where we are currently, which is the Georgetown Club, so we are also in partnership with the Georgetown Club to actually renovate this court and the facilities here as well,” Fernandes revealed.
Teams are expected to arrive in Guyana on July 1, to take full advantage of the newly renovated facilities in a bid to halt Guyana’s 12-year run as junior champions.
That task, however, will not be an easy one since Fernandes revealed that Guyana is pressing to stretch their success at the championships to 13 straight years.
“Our squad is currently in training, as you can see we have a number of kids in the Under 11s who are currently training on the court [at the Georgetown Club],” Fernandes said, pointing to the early morning effort being put in by the juniors to defend their crown.
The championships, however, are expected to attract in excess of 100 athletes, parents, and coaches who will be challenging to dethrone the locals.
Guyana, by virtue of hosting the tournament, sits in an advantageous position to field as many players as necessary.
This, according to Fernandes, places little pressure on the association to name a squad. A few familiar faces, though, are expected to beef up Guyana’s defence during next month’s assignment.
“Because we are hosting at home, we don’t have to pick a team to go to the tournament. We actually get to identify players who the exposure will be good for them and allow them to play in the individuals at least.
“The team that we will field in the championships is more or less selected already with just a few changes possible and we can actually wait until the individuals are finished to make that call because we are hosting. If we were overseas, we would have had to make that call before because it costs people to go on tour.”
The likes of Abosaide Cadogan, Taylor Fernandes, Shomari Wilshire, Makeda Harding, Kirsten Gomes, Madison Fernandes, Daniel Islam and Alexander Cheeks are expected to walk away with major placings.