SINCE his introduction to competitive table tennis in 2014, Central High School student Nickolus Romain has been on a steady rise, and is another bright prospect among junior sportsmen in Guyana.
A member of the Malteenoes Table Tennis Club, Romain is the protégé of former national champion, and current coach Idi Lewis. Romain has been under Lewis’ tutelage for the past two years and has really been coming into his own.
Last year was a particularly favourable year for the 16-year-old, who bagged quite a few titles, and so far his 2017 season has been looking pretty good.
He recently took the ‘B’ Class win of the LFS Burnham Foundation Tournament a few weeks ago. Prior to that he placed first in both the GTTA Junior Doubles Challenge.
Last year, Romain was a part of the Guyana table tennis team that won gold at the Inter-Guiana Games, winning all his matches.
He was also a bronze medallist in the team’s category at the Caribbean Table Tennis Championships, while he made it to the quarterfinals in the singles division. Romain was part of the five-man team that also included Guyana’s leading junior player Shemar Britton.
Those events marked Romain’s first performances on the regional scene, while on a larger scale he took part in the North American Joola Tournament in 2015.
Coach Lewis expressed his satisfaction on Romain’s development since he took him under his charge.
“At first he was making a lot of errors. Like for the first couple months going on to a year, we just had to work on his technique and correcting those things. And then when he started correcting those things he just became a better player.” Lewis noted.
“He definitely works very hard; he’s also very cool and calm under pressure, which is something you can’t coach.”
Romain first got involved in the sport just after he entered Central High and realised that table tennis was a huge sport at the school. He started representing the school and soon after his parents sought Lewis’ help.
“I would say it’s my dedication, discipline and intense training that make me stand out as a table tennis player,” states Romain, when we caught up with him at training earlier this week.
Romain said that the sport has helped him in becoming a better person.
“As a table tennis player, what I love most about being part of this sport is the fact that it motivates me in my personal life to become a better, well rounded young man,” he said. “I like travelling and meeting other experienced players and being able to learn about their culture and customs. I love being able to compete with other players in order to develop my skills, making me a greater player.”
In all his pursuits in developing as a table tennis player, ultimately Romain just wants to ensure that he goes out and makes his country proud.
“My ultimate aspiration as a table tennis player is to make my country proud winning whenever, playing tournaments both regionally and internationally, like in the Olympic Games,” he concluded.