Squad selection for Goodwill Games commences today
DPI, GUYANA, Friday, July 7, 2017
Over the next three days, Guyana Amateur Swimming Association (GASA) will select athletes to represent Guyana at the Goodwill Games. The selection period will run from today, Friday up until Sunday July 09, 2017. A training squad of 60 athletes will be trimmed to 40 who will be selected to represent Guyana at the games, slated to be held here from August 18 to the 21.
President of GASA, Ivan Persaud said the athletes are looking forward to the challenge as they have been training ardently. “The kids are training hard, they are very enthusiastic and they are looking forward to the competition,” Persaud stated.
Persaud anticipates tough competition from the participating countries but is confident that the national squad will deliver medals. Those countries include Bahamas, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, Suriname and St. Lucia with about 200 athletes participating.
The GSA president noted that, “We really got to try to stake our claim at home and hopefully get much more medals than we normally get at these games, because when you come you will see the high standard of the children who would be coming to Guyana to swim… but I am sure our swimmers will really put their shoulder to the wheel and make us proud”
Haresh Bhagwan, one of the coaches who has been working with the swimmers also expressed confidence in the squad.
“We are hoping that when we get out there we put our best effort. We may not be able to dominate all the age groups but we will be able to dominate events along the way and put us in a better position to hold the trophy at home this year,” Bhagwan said.
Fifteen-year-old Alex Winter, who participated in the games last year said that he is looking to better his performance after not doing so well in his first attempt. He also participated in the recently concluded Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA) games in the open water category.
Winter is optimistic about his chances, “I think my chances are fairly good, much better than last year, this year. I am trying to focus more on getting more training in. Last year I was not to up to speed with the training but this year I feel much better, (I) started going to the gym and getting stronger”.
The Goodwill Swim Meet will be held at the National Aquatic Centre in Liliendaal.
By: Isaiah Braithwaite