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France-based Darlene Ramdin led three players in double-figures as T&T’s “Calypso Spikers” crushed Jamaica in three sets (25-12, 25-13, 25-12) in the Women’s Division final of the 15th Senior Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association (Cazova) Championship at the Jean Pierre Complex, Mucurapo, on Sunday.

The win for T&T led by first year head coach Nicholson Drakes was a historic one in many ways. It was achieved on home soil and led by captain Kelly-Anne Billingy after finishing third in 1993 and second in 2002 in tournaments won by Barbados.

In addition, the victory which came in 72 minutes was a record fifth straight (2006, 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2014) to go past Barbados which won in 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2004 as the teams with the most wins on the trot, while both teams now have the same amount of titles overall as well, six.

Barbados was also crowned champions in 1993 and 1994 while T&T got its first in 1996.

Bahamas with its victories in 1992 and 1995, and the now defunct Netherlands Antilles, which won the inaugural title in 1991 are the only other teams to have won.

For T&T, Ramdin who copped one of the “Best Spiker” awards had nine kills, three blocks and three kills in her 15 points output and she was well supported by fellow France-based starlet and ‘Best Spiker” awardee Channon Thompson with 12, inclusive of ten kills while Marisha Herbert added ten.

Thompson also collected the “Best Server” and “Most Valuable Player” of the tournament

The 31st world ranked “Calypso Spikers” dominated the Jamaica “Riddim Girlz” to lead 35-14 on spikes, 10-2 on blocks and 6-1 on service aces while committing only 20 errors to their opponent’s 24.

Chicago-born Jamaican captain, Simone Asque who has played professionally in Cyprus and Denmark had six points and Karenza Beckford, four in the loss.

The second placed finish was the third for Jamaica, having done so in a 1996 loss to T&T, and in 2004 to Barbados.

An elated Billingy speaking after yet another triumph for her team which is now unbeaten at the Cazova level since losing in the 2004 semifinals, said her team was happy to accomplish its goal of a record fifth straight title to equal Barbados with six titles overall.

“During the tournament I don’t think we played our best volleyball and tonight the girls really stepped it up a bit by saving their best for last.

Billingy also praised for the crowd support saying, “We are thankful for the extra energy they brought.

Drakes after capturing his maiden crown as coach said he was happy to see the improvement of the team from the first match to the final.

“As the tournament went along we had to make adjustments and tonight our serving, passing and blocking was at a level that we have come to expect, which made it difficult for Jamaica.”

Honour roll:

Best Spiker: Channon Thompson (T&T)

Best Spiker: Darlene Ramdin (T&T)

Best Opposite: Sandrina Hunsel (Suriname)

Best Receiver: Rheeza Grant (T&T)

Best Digger: Farahnaz Levens (Suriname)

Best Blocker: Shani Leacock (Barbados)

Best Blocker: Thonya Joseph (Barbados)

Best Setter: Cheryl Brunnings (Suriname)

Best Libero: Farahnaz Levens (Suriname)

Best Server: Channon Thompson (T&T)

Best Scorer: Sandrina Hunsel (Suriname)

Most Valuable Player: Channon Thompson (T&T)

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The team of, from left to right, Asafa Powell, Nesta Carter, Usain Bolt and Michael Frater have all now returned their medals to the IOC ©Getty Images

Jamaican sprinter Nesta Carter has launched an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against the ruling that saw his country's 4x100 metres relay team, including Usain Bolt, stripped of their Beijing 2008 Olympic gold medal.

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National female shot putter Cleopatra Borel continued her medal winning performances, striking gold at the World Challenge Meet in Brazil on Sunday.

Borel, who has been consistent this year, threw the shot put 18.29 metres to snatch the glory despite arriving at the hotel only 10 hours before the start of the meet.

Last month she secured silver at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland with a 18.52m throw.

Meanwhile last Friday, Deandra Daniel was fourth in the women’s high jump, clearing 1.73m at the North American, Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Under-23 Championships held in Kamloops, Canada. Alyxandria Treasure of Canada was first with 1.85m followed by American Shanay Briscoe (1.76) and Rebecca Haworth (1.76) of Canada. Also, Moriba Morian failed to qualify for the finals of the men 100m, finishing third in his heat in 10.57 seconds. Steve Waithe and Akeem Stewart captured silver and bronze respectively, though, Waithe was second in the triple jump with a distance of 15.94m behind Eric Sloan (16.20) of United States, Lathone Collie Minns of Bahamas was third with 15.86m.

Stewart settled for third place in the shot put with a 17.76m throw while Americans Willy Irwin (19.44) and Darrell Hill (18.85) were first and second respectively.

Mark London failed to secure a medal in the men’s 800 event, finishing seventh in the final after crossing the line in one minute 52.87 seconds. Mexican Bryan Martinez Sanchez won with a time of one minute 47.90 followed by Thomas Riva (1:48.19) of Canada and American Christopher Low (1:48.19) who were second and third respectively.

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Trinidad and Tobago's Keston Bledman, Emmanuel Callender, Richard Thompson and Marc Burns will not automatically be promoted to the gold medal position at Beijing 2008 following the disquailifcation of Jamaica ©Getty Images

Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association President Warren Blake claims to be "surprised" by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decision to strip the country's 4x100 metres relay team of their gold medal from Beijing 2008 after Nesta Carter failed a drugs test.

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In keeping with the National Sport Policy, the Government of Trinidad and Tobago is committed to providing financial assistance to outstanding athletes, in support of their preparation for, and participation in international competition.

The Policy that guides the EAAP provides financial support for nationals who have attained the qualifying international ranking determined by the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC). These policy guidelines were developed through consultation with the TTOC, national sporting organisations and other co-opted interests.

As such, the EAAP speaks to:

  • Athletes who are world-ranked in individual sports
  • Those sports included in Olympic events and programmes
  • Athletes who medal at Olympic Games, World Championships, Commonwealth Games, Senior Pan American Games and Senior Central American and Caribbean Games.


Funding is allocated under the following categories:

  • Athletes ranked in the World Top 15 positions will qualify for the current maximum sum of $250,000
  • Athletes ranked in the World Top 16-40 positions will benefit up to $187,500 (75% of the maximum sum)
  • Athletes who medal at the specific Games and Championships will benefit, on a case-by-case basis, from up to $75,000 (30% of the maximum sum)
  • The funding will be provided for athletes who undergo a four-year cycle of preparation and training leading up an Olympic year.


The funding is intended to meet the following expenses:

  • Training schedules
  • Coaching fees
  • Nutritional and medical expenses
  • Travel expenses for training
  • Travel expenses for sanctioned competitions and pre-Games tours
  • Accommodation for training
  • Professional expenses
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Flashback… Former Prime Minister Patrick Manning and then sports minister Gary Hunt pose with members of the T&T 4x100 mens relay team during a welcome reception at Piarco International Airport in 2008. From left is Aaron Amstrong, Emmanuel Callender, Richard Thompson, Rondel Sorillo, Keston Bledman and Marc Burns.

It’s not official yet but going on past history, T&T is well poised to gain its third Olympic gold medal sometime in the very near future.

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