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Guyana sending only athletes and boxers to South American Games

Guyana sending only athletes and boxers to South American Games

GUYANA is expected to be represented only in athletics and boxing, when a contingent attends the South American Games next month in Santiago, Chile, according to president of the Guyana Olympics Association (GOA), K. Juman-Yassin. According to Yassin several factors, including finance and how the sporting disciplines have been performing recently, were taken into consideration when the GOA decided upon which sporting disciplines should attend.
Yassin noted that the cost per person for airfare alone is approximately US$2500. Because of this athletes selected needed to prove that they are worth to be given the chance to attend.
Council member of the GOA, Gokarn Ramdhani will be the Chef-de-Mission of the Guyana team.
Six track athletes and four boxers are expected to account for Guyana’s participation at this year’s hosting of the quadrennial event, which will run from March 8 to 16 at locations in and around the Chile National Stadium – Estadio Nacional Julio Martínez Prádanos.
The GOA is the body in charge of organising the Guyana team for the event, and Yassin yesterday confirmed that the national bodies for the two selected sporting disciplines have already submitted their list of athletes.
For athletics, the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) president Aubrey Hutson confirmed that the Association has submitted Alicia Fortune, Alika Morgan, Cleveland Thomas, Cleveland Forde, Winston George and Kevin Bailey.
President of the Guyana Amateur Boxing Association (GABA), Steve Ninvalle, said Dennis Thomas, Imran Khan, Eon Bancroft, and Theresa London are the boxers who have been submitted.
London, the lone female on the boxing team will be competing in the middleweight, Thomas will also compete in the middleweight on the men’s side. Khan will compete in the bantamweight category and Bancroft in the welterweight division.
According to Ninvalle, London’s presence on the team is the beginning of GABA’s efforts to hold true to its promise to increase its attention on female boxing in Guyana this year. Ninvalle said these four boxers comprise the best possible team to represent Guyana.
This year will mark Guyana’s fourth consecutive attendance at the event, since the country’s inaugural attendance back in 1998. Guyana last attended the event in 2010, when it was last held in Medellin, Columbia.
Participating along with 14 other countries Guyana finished 11th with four medals: one gold, one silver, two bronze.
The gold came from Nicolette Fernandes’ performance in the women’s singles of the squash competition where she defeated Columbia’s Silvia Anhulo in the final, Fernandes was also a part of the bronze medal performance where she teamed up with Ashley Khalil to win the women’s doubles. The silver came off Adrian Spellen’s performance in the men’s 87kg category in Taekwondo.
However, neither squash nor taekwondo will be represented this year, according to Yassin he is not aware that these two sporting disciplines are still a part of the Games list of events to be contested.
As the name implies, the South American Games is a multisport event contested between nations of the South America continent, though athletes from countries in Central America and the Caribbean also take part.
In its attendance over the past 16 years Guyana amassed a total of 14 medals.
According to its website, one of the characteristics of the South American Games is that it gathers Olympic sports, like athletics and swimming, as well as other sports, not included in the Olympic programme, such as bowling and karate.
Last year saw the event, which is organised by the South American Sports Organisation (ODESUR), sprouting a youth arm – the South American Youth Games. Guyana fielded a team of 22 participants to the event.
Written By Tamica Garnett

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