Boldon named among six coaches in T&T contingent

Jehue Gordon is among 21 athletes selected on the Trinidad and Tobago team for the August 22-30 IAAF World Championships in Beijing, China. Gordon will defend his men’s 400 metres hurdles title in Beijing, and is also part of the 4x400m squad.

Another global senior champion, Keshorn Walcott is one of 13 men who will fly the Red, White and Black at Worlds. Walcott is the reigning Olympic men’s javelin champion, and recently added the Pan Am title to his list of accolades.

With triple Olympic silver medallist Richard “Torpedo” Thompson out for the rest of the season with an injury, Keston Bledman leads the charge for T&T in the men’s 100m dash.

The country will have strong representation in the men’s 400m. Four quartermilers have dived under 45 seconds this season. Machel Cedenio is the fastest of the lot at 44.36 seconds, followed by Deon Lendore (44.41), Lalonde Gordon (44.64) and Renny Quow (44.72). A fifth T&T quartermiler, Jarrin Solomon has a 45.15 seconds season’s best to his name.

The three T&T athletes for the men’s one-lap will be chosen from Cedenio, Gordon, Quow and Solomon. Lendore is coming back from injury, and will run only in the 4x400m relay.

Sprint hurdler Mikel Thomas is enjoying a fruitful campaign this year, and would be keen to continue his fine run of form at the 2015 Worlds.

Kelly-Ann Baptiste and Michelle-Lee Ahye will challenge for honours in the women’s 100m. The sprint brigade also includes Semoy Hackett, world youth 100m silver medallist Khalifa St Fort, Reyare Thomas and Kamaria Durant.

T&T will also be represented by Cleopatra Borel in the women’s shot put and Sparkle McKnight in the women’s 400m hurdles.

Quadruple Olympic medallist Ato Boldon, who guided St Fort to World Youth silver, will be part of the T&T coaching staff in Beijing. Team T&T athletes left yesterday for China, where they will attend an NGC-sponsored pre-Worlds training camp.


Men—Keston Bledman (100, 4x100), Rondel Sorrillo (100, 4x100), Kyle Greaux (200, 4x100), Machel Cedenio (400, 4x400), Lalonde Gordon (400, 4x400), Renny Quow (400, 4x400), Jarrin Solomon (400, 4x400), Mikel Thomas (110 hurdles, 4x100), Jehue Gordon (400 hurdles, 4x400), Keshorn Walcott (javelin), Emmanuel Callender (4x100), Dan-Neil Telesford (4x100), Deon Lendore (4x400).

Women—Kelly-Ann Baptiste (100, 4x100), Michelle-Lee Ahye (100, 4x100), Semoy Hackett (100, 200, 4x100), Khalifa St Fort (100, 4x100), Reyare Thomas (200, 4x100), Kamaria Durant (200, 4x100), Sparkle McKnight (400 hurdles), Cleopatra Borel (shot put).

Officials—Dexter Voisin (manager), Dr Ian Hypolite (head coach), Edwin Skinner (coach), Charlie Joseph (coach), Gunness Persad (coach), Ato Boldon (coach), Ismael Lopez Mastrapa (coach).

Medical—Dr Anyl Gopeesingh, Dr Verne Alleyne, Ian Sharpe, Zephyrinus Nicholas, Nicole Fuentes.


Calypso Girls win two on the trot

The Trinidad and Tobago Calypso Girls turned on the style at the ongoing Netball World Cup as they beat Zambia 66-39 in an exciting contest, yesterday. The combined experience of captain Joelisa Cooper and veteran Rhonda John-Davis helped T&T to their second win in a row on day five at the World Cup.

Despite the match being played around midday Sydney time, local netball enthusiasts had to ready the coffee and wait till late yesterday to see the match which started 10.20pm T&T time, on Monday.

The team did not disappoint, however, as Cooper led the assists count with 14, while centre John-Davis, a veteran of five Netball World Cups in her 152nd appearance in the red, white and black, had 13 assists of her own.

At spanking-new Netball Central Arena, both teams set out to impose themselves on the match early. Zambia was the first to get on the scoreboard, using patient play to get the first goal courtesy of Lucy Jere. But it was the slicker connections in the T&T forward line which allowed the Calypso Girls to pull ahead.

T&T burst out of the blocks in the second quarter. Goal attack Joelisa Cooper, who scored seven goals out of eight attempts overall, worked hard up the court playing as a wing-attack, finding the holding goal shooter Samantha Wallace, who was bombing them in from range.

A solid defensive effort from T&T, particularly wing defence Onella Jack, wreaked havoc in the Zambian attacking third. Two injury time-outs in quick succession saw T&T forced to make changes at centre and goal-defence, but didn’t disrupt their flow as they continued to add to their tally.

The introduction of Zambian goal attack Elizabeth Bwalya at half-time created one of the shortest shooting line-ups of the tournament, though adding pace and ball speed to the Zambian attack line.

After running goal-for-goal for most of the quarter, T&T eventually pulled away again, with goal defence Candice Guerero beginning to create turnovers and shooter Afeisha Noel mixing it up under the post with strong holds and even a lay-up.

Calypso Girls coach Wesley Gomes made a number of changes for the last quarter as they continued to push out the margin. Cooper returned to the match in wing-attack, showing good vision to feed her shooters. Screens set by Noel created plenty of opportunity for the speedy goal-attack Kalifa McCollin, who scored seven goals, while the long arms of keeper Daystar Swift created uncertainty for the Zambian feeders.

Cooper was elated with the win, which has helped T&T to finally gain momentum in the tournament. “We are trying to do everything we have been taught in training to move from this game onto the next and go from strength to strength,” Cooper said.

“We still have a lot of unforced errors, a lot of drop catches and a lot of turnovers from the defence straight back so we need to work on that stuff. “We just need to relax and play our brand of netball. There is no need to force the ball or do anything fancy; we just need to relax and play our game.” she added.


To mark UN International Youth Day, the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), working with
the Commonwealth Secretariat and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), have today
(Wednesday 12 August) announced a dynamic and inclusive programme of athlete and public
engagement activities at the upcoming Samoa 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games to provide
support and inspiration to tackle the issues facing the next generation of global sporting citizens.
Taking place on the island nation of Samoa from 5-11 September 2015, the Commonwealth
Youth Games will bring together up to 1000 young athletes aged 14-18, who will represent their
country and compete for 107 Gold medals in 9 sports over 5 days.
A formative first taste of an international multi-sport environment for many, the new initiatives
announced today will help fulfil the Games’ core ambition to celebrate high-performance sporting
competition, personal development and new Commonwealth friendships made on the level
playing field of sport.
Welcoming the initiatives, CGF Chief Executive David Grevemberg said: “We’re thrilled to be
joining forces with the Commonwealth Secretariat and UNICEF to enable innovative
projects at this year’s Commonwealth Youth Games which will engage, inspire and
support our young Commonwealth athletes and young Pacific Island hosts. In line with
our strategic ambitions, we hope the programme will have a lasting impact, recognising
our young Commonwealth citizens as essential to achieving sustainable human
The Commonwealth Secretariat, working with the CGF and the local Games Organising
Committee in Samoa, will deliver a series of fun and interactive workshops to raise awareness
among young athletes of the potential to use sport to contribute to Commonwealth development.
The workshops will take place on rotation each day throughout the Games, enabling athletes and
officials to attend on an optional basis, and will be delivered by representatives from the
Commonwealth Youth Sport for Development and Peace (CYDSP) working group, a network of
young sport and development leaders from across the Commonwealth.
Oliver Dudfield, Head of Sport for Development and Peace at the Commonwealth Secretariat
said: “The opportunity for participants at the Games to learn more about how sport can be
used as a tool for development is another example of the important role the Games
movement can play in promoting the Commonwealth and our shared values.”

Running alongside the workshops, and building on one of the regional legacy programmes
enabled by the CGF and UNICEF’s groundbreaking fundraising partnership at the Glasgow 2014
Commonwealth Games, Just Play fan zones will also be set up at Games-Time to enable young
locals, visitors, athletes and officials to participate in interactive games and activities.
Active in nine Pacific Island countries, Just Play uses sport to reduce vulnerability and address
social issues affecting young people in the region. The Just Play programme promotes physical
activity for children and young people through football and other sport-related activities, while
creatively and inclusively addressing endemic issues such as non-communicable diseases, poor
nutrition, gender equality, stigma and discrimination towards children with disabilities.
UNICEF Pacific representative, Dr. Karen Allen said: “Sport is a powerful development tool to
engage children and young people across the world. Within the Pacific, since the
programme’s inception in 2009, Just Play has attracted more than 200,000 girls and boys
to engage in physical activity and learn healthy lifestyle habits and self-confidence. The
programme also encourages gender equality, promotes social inclusion and reduces
anxiety after natural disasters.
For the Commonwealth Youth Games, UNICEF and Just Play have partnered with CGF to
showcase how sport in the Pacific is helping make a positive impact on children’s lives.”
As a further legacy, both projects will collaborate closely on training and implementation,
supporting networking and knowledge-sharing between CYSDP working group representatives
and regional UNICEF Pacific volunteers.
- ENDS -

Port of Spain, Trinidad. Picture a space with immense buzzing sounds; the sound of conversations amongst the people of Trinidad and Tobago speaking nothing but the Olympics Games and Team TTO. A park we pass by on a regular with barely any sign of life; but this time filled with colourful tents boasting of red, white and black. Imagine walking into a dynamic space filled with culture, music, dance and sport; a place where all are welcome to share the same passion and witness the power of sport to unify a nation. The Olympic Park – Trinbagonian style.

The Olympic Games is the most anticipated multi-sport event on the global calendar. Following the ‘One year to Rio 2016’ acknowledgement at Olympic House on Wednesday 5th August, President of the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC), Brian Lewis, wants to turn the Lord Harris square into an Olympic experience. The idea is to recreate the square into an Olympic Park and the surrounding community into an Olympic neighbourhood.

The Olympic Park will be focused on creating an Olympic experience for supporters of the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic team. The park will include a number of different features to attract supporters with the intention of building greater awareness and support for sport in Trinidad and Tobago.


More so, the surrounding community will be an Olympic neighbourhood focusing on shedding a historic and positive light on the capital city. With a number of Primary and Secondary schools in Port of Spain, the Olympic Park will create a space for learning as we continue to educate persons about the Olympic movement, T&T’s Olympic history healthy lifestyles and Trinbagonian culture.


On the Road to Rio 2016, bringing the idea of an Olympic Park will be ideal for capturing the Olympic spirit. The vision of 10 or more Olympic gold medals by the year 2024 is a huge challenge but requires the necessary support to spark these ideas into existence.

TRINIDAD and Tobago Special Olympians have returned home victorious after competing in eight disciplines at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games.

The athletes won a total of 48 medals—15 gold, nine silver and 24 bronze with (18) 4th place, three 5th place, seven 6th place, two 7th place and one 8th place ribbon.

The delegation comprised 64 people with 20 coaches and three officials. The athletes competed in aquatics, athletics, basketball,

bocce, equestrian, football, power lifting and volleyball.

The world games was held in Los Angeles, California, from July 25 to August 2 with approximately 7,000 participants from 177 countries.

In 2011, the T&T team captured 15 Gold, 15 Silver and eight Bronze medals.

The aquatics team struck gold on day one of the competition. Swimmers Nikolai Lalla finished his 50 metre breaststroke in 38.43 seconds, Jariah Walker finished his 25 metre backstroke in 23.23 seconds and Chavez Lamy in 16.85 seconds. Shania Surujbally and Jaleel Pierre won ribbons. Stefan Singh won silver in the 1,500 metre Open Water Swim, which was the first time this competition was held at Special Olympics.

On Day 2 the Bocce team also claimed gold victory. Bocce is a sport resembling lawn bowling.

Athletes Renee Massiah, Alicia Khan, Colin Duncan and Kerry James teamed up to win silver medals.

The football team was successful in defeating Canada, Barbados, Costa Rica, Switzerland, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Hong Kong.

Power-lifting champion Nicholas Mc Knight won a silver (in Benach Press with 67.5 kilogrammes) and three bronze medals in Squat (65.5 kg), Dead Lift (105 Kg) and Combine Lifts (240Kg). Damian Marquis got silver in squat and combination lift, bronze in bench press and 4th in dead lift. Malachi Sylvester got a bronze in bench press, squat, dead lift and combination loft.

Joanne Piango won gold scoring 53 points in the Equestrian English Equitation competition while Aaron Ben Ali won bronze with 48 points.

In athletics Donelle Walkes ran the 200m in 34.72 seconds to capture a Gold Medal. Yetendra Sing and Ishmael Perpignac won 7th place ribbons in their 400 metre races. Donal Doyle took 8th place ribbons in the 200 metre race. In the “Softball Throw”, which is an adaptation of the “Shot-put”, Salina Lennard won Gold with a throw of 9.97m Rosanna Gebodh also won Gold with a throw of 6.40m, while Tmeyon Logie capturing a Silver Medal with a throw of 14.46m and Jade Ramkawalsingh threw 11.82m to capture a Bronze Medal.

The basketball team captured the bronze medal while the volley team copped 4th place.

Proud parent Lee-Anthony Walker, Jariah Walker's father said he was proud of his son and his accomplishments in making his mark in the world games.


London Olympic gold medallist Keshorn “Keshie” Walcott believes the medal bonus initiative by the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) was a motivator for local athletes to perform and can drive them to achieve more medal success.

Walcott, winner in the javelin event, was one of three Pan Am Games medallists at Olympic House to receive their medal bonus and to mark one year to go to the RIO 2016 Olympics. As a gold medal winner at last month's Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada, Walcott picked up US$3,000.

Fellow individual gold medallist, shot putter Cleopatra Borel will receive a similar amount. Silver medal winners, hurdler Mikel Thomas, quarter-miler Machel Cedenio and cyclist Njisane Phillip will get US$2,000, while bronze medal swimmer George Bovell III will receive US$1,000. The 4x400 gold medal and 4x100 bronze medal relay teams will get a combined US$9,000 and US$3,000 respectively.

“I think it's a good idea to begin with the initiative. Some people may not admit it but it is always something to look forward to besides the medal itself, something that will give you a little extra push, knowing you are going to get some reward for all your hard work outside of the competition,” said Walcott. Walcott related that he and Cuban-born coach Ismael Lopez Mostrapa always try to time the big throws for the major championships like Worlds, Pan Ams, Commonwealth, and the Olympics, but said “it was a bit of a surprise” when he launched the spear to a new national record of 90.16 metres in Switzerland on July 9.

“My coach and I always try to the big throw at the right moment but we always expected that throw (over 90 metres) to come this year. I guess it came a bit earlier than we expected,” said Walcott.

Walcott also related that he and Mostrapa pondered heavily on his decision to participate in the Pan Am Games after he injured the left ankle on July 17 in Monaco, days before his event in Toronto. He said he was embarrassed to be pushed in a wheelchair through the Pearson International Airport in Toronto ahead of the quadrennial hemispheric Games.

“I always tell myself tomorrow is never promised, so I always try to do my best when I get out there to achieve my goals while representing the country to the best of my ability. So coach and I sat down and decided this may be my only chance (at a Pan Am Games) and we might as well take it'', Walcott said.

Walcott said he has matured significantly from the dark-horse 19-year-old who shocked the world with a gold medal toss at the 2012 London Olympics, and is a more experienced and seasoned campaigner these days.

And he was especially complimentary of his training partner and fellow Pan Am Games gold medallist Cleopatra Borel, the Women's shot put champion.

“Cleo and I have been training together and knowing how hard she works, it is great seeing that she is rewarded in her performances. Hopefully she can go on an do much better and achieve more success at Worlds and other major championships,” Walcott said.

The TTOC hosted the ‘One year to Rio 2016' acknowledgement at Olympic House on Wednesday in unison with the rest of the world in marking the one-year countdown to the Olympics on August 5 next year.

According to Lewis, the TTOC used the landmark day to celebrate the road to Rio and commemorate the athletes that had achieved excellence in Toronto.

The proceedings opened with a short video presentation highlighting team TTO's performances in Canada and TTOC president Brian Lewis reinforced the vision of achieving the ten or more gold medals by the year 2024. “Toronto 2015 and the performances of our athletes started to make some people believe that it (#10Golds24) may have been possible; that it wasn't far fetched and unrealistic,” he stated.

“Rio 2016 therefore, in the context of ten or more Olympic gold medals by the year 2024 is going to be very important because thereafter comes Tokyo 2020 and then 2024,” he continued.

National Association of Athletic Administrations (NAAA) president Ephraim Serrette said his organisation had a good working relationship with the TTOC and would work hard to facilitate the athletes in their pursuit for international glory.

Also in attendance on Wednesday was Emmanuel Callender and Dan Neil Telesford, both part of the 4x100m relay team, the country's first Olympic gold medallist Hasely Crawford, TTOC general secretary Annette Knot, Pan Am Games Chef de Mission Diane Henderson and former TTOC general secretary, senator Elton Prescott.