Guyana’s emerging table tennis maestro Jonatan Van Lange has hailed the contributions of coach, Sydney Christophe, on his return home from his recent debut table tennis tour of the United States.
Van Lange, a 2018 Caribbean junior boys doubles silver medallist which he captured during his partnership with Kaysan Ninvalle, excelled throughout his recent stint abroad, clinching two titles at the Westchester Table Tennis Tournament to conclude his tour.
Before that, the Titans Table Tennis Club player, served his way to championship honours at the Joola Teams and the AACCT tournaments, for which he acknowledged Christophe’s assistance.
“It was excellent,” the young man said of his experience working with the ITTF coach.
“I played against a lot of different persons, with different rubbers who had different tactics and styles,” he added while noting that Christophe’s input assisted him in countering some of the diverse challenges he faced.
Now back home and beaming with confidence because of his success abroad, the young man is not taking his progression casually.
“My game has gone to another level but not at the level I wish it would have been at, because of the amount of hours I would have put into training,” he disclosed.
However, in laying out his blueprint for 2019, Van Lange declared that he has established a few ambitious goals, one of which is to compete at this year’s senior Caribbean championship set to be held in Guyana in March.
“I wanna try to get on the senior men’s team to participate in the senior Caribbean Championship and possibly the Pan Am games…” he declared while receiving the vote of confidence from his local coach, Dwain Dick, who explained that once the ideal environment and criterion are established, the 12-year-old may indeed have a go. “It is realistic,” he said of Van Lange chances while adding: “because they [Guyana] should be having two teams [when playing at home], but the important thing is knowing the criteria for selection. Once we know what that is; whether there are trials or national training camps, we can then work towards it,” Dick explained.
The Titans Table Tennis head coach was also quite satisfied with the returns of Van Lange’s touring partner, Kristian Sahadeo, who also claimed a title and a few other notable performances while in the U.S.
Dick pointed out that more opportunities, including scholarships, could be afforded to the duo once they continue to progress along their current upward curved.
“They were very active during the year, and they both performed well locally and took that a step further and had good performances in the US… what you are seeing is the development and progression from both of them.
“Both of them are 12-year olds, and once they keep going to the US to participate and compete, for me, we got to try and find a way to secure scholarships for them because both of them are academically okay,” he said of the Bishops’ High students.