Of course a tournament of this magnitude could not have been possible without the full support of the Association and the generosity of our sponsors. We are grateful for the support of the Belize Olympic Committee, Belize Bank, BTB, Bennys, BTL, Brodies, Atlantic Bank, Crystal, Powerade, Brodies, KBH, Courtenay Coye, BEL, Mikado, Brothers Habet, Barrow and Williams, Smart, Mirage,Gentrac, Fantasy 5 and Best Western.
Belize participated for the second time in the Central American Pre-Infantile U13 & U11 Table Tennis Championships in San Jose, Costa Rica from July 27th to the 30th 2016. This year the Belize delegation comprised of six players. This included Taye Parkinson (age 11), Terry Su (age 13), Devesh Hukmani (age 12), Jude Castellanos (age 12), Jofny Paguaga (age 12), and Kelly Liu (age 13). They participated in four categories at the event; team, singles, doubles, and mixed doubles, and all played in the U13 category with the exception of Taye Parkinson who played singles in the U11 category.
7 Central American countries participated in this event and included Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Panama, Costa Rica, and Honduras. Nicaragua was unable to participate in this event yet again. The competition began on July 27th with the Team Event. Teams were comprised of two players each and each country could register up to two teams (with the exception of the host country, Costa Rica, who were allowed four). Belize participated only in the U13 boy’s category of this event, as we only had one girl representing from Belize in our delegation and one boy in the U11 category.
Belize Team A was comprised of Taye Parkinson and Devesh Hukmani, and was placed in group C, a rather challenging group with El Salvador A, Costa Rica B, and Costa Rica D. Belize Team B which was comprised of Terry Su and Jude Castellanos was placed in the toughest group, which included Panama A, Guatemala B and Costa Rica A, some of the events strongest teams. Both of Belize’s Teams fought hard, but were unable to secure a win over the other countries in their groups. The team event finished in the morning of the second day of the competition with Guatemala A winning overall, Costa Rica A placing second, and Panama A placing third. The doubles event began shortly after in the afternoon.
Again, we were only able to participate in the U13 boy’s category with two teams. Taye Parkinson and Devesh Hukmani played as one team and Terry Su and Jude Castellanos as the other. This event utilized a straight knockout format. Due to our results in the team event, for all subsequent events we would be seeded last. This meant that the draws would be tough, but our players remained eager to do their best and managed still to put out a good showing with some great points being played. Unfortunately, our Team A was unable to make it past the first round losing to Costa Rica B in a close match (2-3). Belize Team B had a slightly better performance overcoming Aiven Ng/Joseph Kirsch of Panama B in the first round 3-1, but lost to Benjamin Paniagua and Matias Uribe of Costa Rica C, in the round of 8, leaving Belize B, Terry Su and Jude Castellanos, with fourth place in the Doubles.
With two events down, the mixed doubles event kicked off in the morning of the third day. This year is the first year our delegation included a female participant, Kelly Liu. As a result this was also the first year we were able to play the mixed doubles event. Our mixed doubles team comprised of Terry Su and Kelly Liu. This event, like the doubles before it, utilized a straight knockout format. Terry Su and Kelly Liu played Johnny Vasquez and Maria Fernanda Monge of Costa Rica in the first match and lost 0-3, but in very close games. The mixed doubles event continued into the afternoon and finished around 2 o clock with Guatemala emerging victorious, winning 1st, 2nd, and 3rd positions. El Salvador also placed third in this event.
After the mixed doubles and a hearty lunch, the main event began. In the afternoon of the third day, the round robin portion of the singles event would be played. This determined which juniors would get to play on the final day. All of our juniors played this event and each was placed into separate groups. Taye Parkinson played the U11 category while Terry Su, Devesh Hukmani, Jude Castellanos, Jofny Paguaga, and Kelly Liu all played the U13 Category.
In the U13 category our players were unable to make it out of their groups. Devesh Hukmani managed to win over Walter Acuna of El Salvador 3-0 and managed to take a set from Jose Perez of Costa Rica, but was unable to secure a second win which would have put him into the main draw on the last day of competition.
Terry Su, Jude Castellanos, and Jofny Paguaga fought hard in their groups, but lost all games 0-3. Kelly Liu, had a promising start winning her first game against Honduras 11-4, but nerves getting the best of her lost the match 1-3 in the end. She played much better in her second match against Kiara Nunez of Costa Rica who was a technically stronger player than Rocio Hernandez of Honduras, but again lost this time 0-3. Considering that this was her first time in the international arena and playing so late into the competition (not playing team or doubles on the first two days), Kelly Liu made an impressive first debut, with many of the coaches from the other countries welcoming our female participation and commenting positively on her level of play. They also expressed similar sentiments of our boys’ team, remarking that they have not seen such improvement from any country in such a short time (this being only our second time attending this event). They were especially mesmerized by Taye Parkinson who at this point was our last hope of medalling in the competition.
Taye Parkinson played the U11 category. Feeling determined to prove himself after his losses in his first two events Taye Parkinson came back strong by emerging from his group undefeated beating Skawell Picado of Costa Rica 3-0, David Herrera of Panama 3-0, and Kobe Zhang of Honduras 3-0. With these wins he earned the top position in the group and immediately qualified to play in the main draw of the singles event which was scheduled for the last day.
On the final day, Taye Parkinson was scheduled to play against Moises Alvarez of Costa Rica first. He overcame Moises rather quickly with a 3 set straight win. He would then play last last year’s champion, Rogelio Castro of Mexico. Taye had played Rogelio last year in the Round of 8 and was unsuccessful against him. This time around Taye felt much better prepared to overcome Rogelio. This match was closely contested, but in the end Rogelio still proved too much for Taye as he lost 1-3. This lost meant that Taye would have to settle for a Bronze Medal in the U11 category.
For the BTTA’s second international pre-infantile event, our juniors have done exceptionally well, with all the other countries from the region acknowledging and encouraging our continued participation at the event.
In January of this year we had also participated for the third time in the Central American U15 & U18 Table Tennis Championships in El Salvador. Our juniors had performed exceedingly well there as well. Their participation and performance in El Salvador, and now with the performance of our even younger juniors in Costa Rica, we know that we are on the right track towards developing a stronger Belizean Table Tennis. We are confident that so long as we continue to work with our junior players, we will continue to receive positive results. This is the first time that one of our junior players has managed to medal at an international event, and this has come only two years after the work with our junior players have begun. We are very proud of this result!The Belize Table Tennis Association would like to thank the Belize Olympic Committee for its support, the junior players and their parents for their commitment and hard work, our coaches, Gabriel Guerrero and Luis Estefano Valls for preparing the juniors leading up to the event and for working with them as coaches during the event, to Manuel Paguaga, who was our doctor on site at the event, and all others who contributed towards making this event a successful one.
The Boy Who Wore Orange
by Yasser Musa
Taye Parkinson is a player that thinks about what he does on the table. At eleven years old he has become the talk of the Belize table tennis community.
Last year he was named the player of the year. He has won tournaments in every category offered – 12 and under, 15 and under, 18 and under, C division, B division and yes he recently won an A division tournament.
Over the weekend (July 6th-10th) the Central American tournament known as Codicader was hosted in Belize for the first time. And yes Taye Parkinson delivered. First he along with team mates Devesh Hukmani, Jude Castellanos, and Jofny Paguaga placed second in the team event, and then along with his partner Devesh Hukmani defeated the Costa Rican duo Johnny Vasquez and Steven Aguilar in the U- 12 Boys Doubles.
And in a fitting poetic singles final Taye faced the formidable Sebastian Mendoza of Panama. In front of his home crowd Taye displayed a relentless attack game measured with precision serving. The audience erupted in jubilation as Taye delivered the U -12 Boys’ Singles victory for his team and for Belize.
When the match ended his teammates rushed into the play area and hoisted Taye in the air. It was a moment of joy for all, but for the boy who wore orange from St. Joseph Primary School it was oh so sweet!!!
The 2016 Brodie’s Annual Strong & Weak Double Tournament took place this past Sunday, July 24, 2016 at the BES Auditorium, the home of table tennis.
Competing in a DOUBLE ELIMINATION Format, 14 Strong & Weak Doubles Team began competing for this year’s title. Last year’s winners Carlos Cui and Terry Su were present to defend their title.
In the Upper portion of the draw, Joshua Gegg and Luis Bardales made it to the semi-finals by beating out Jaylen Nicholson and Aejelee Thurton, Desire Amagwula and Kareem Stewart, Rohit Pagarani & Samron Pott, before losing to Carlos Cui and Terry Su, which sent them into the loser’s bracket.
After losing to Carlos Cui & Terry Su, Joshua and Luis had to overcome recent CODICADER Doubles champions Devesh Hukmani and Taye Parkinson. In a nail biting semifinals they managed to overcome the CODICADER champions with Taye missing two serves down 9-9 giving the game to Joshua and Luis 11-9 in the fifth set of the best of five match.
Last year’s champions Carlos Cui and Terry Su made their way to the finals undefeated by beating out Taye Parkinson and Devesh Hukmani, Jorge Espat and Moses Babb, and Joshua Gegg, and Luis Bardales. They would meet Joshua and Luis again in the finals, this time with Josh and Luis seeking revenge.
The final turned out to be an intense match which played out down to the wire, but Josh and Luis would not have their revenge losing 2 games to 3.
CODICADER doubles champions Taye Parkinson and Devesh Hukmani would have to settle for 3rd place while Jorge Espat and Moses Babb finished fourth.
1st - Carlos Cui & Terry Su
2nd - Joshua Gegg & Luis Bardalez
3rd - Devesh Hukmani & Taye Parkinson
4th - Jorge Espat & Moses Babb
On hand to deliver the trophies and gift items was BTTA Vice President, Hector Lopez, and Ivan Briceno representing the Sponsors, Brodies. He thanked the BTTA for the opportunity to support the development of table tennis and this particular Doubles event. He also mentioned that they will continue to support the event especially after seeing how well our junior players performed at the event.
Trophies and Gift Cards were presented to all the winners.
CONGRATULATIONS to all the Winners, and a big THANK YOU to the SPONSORS BRODIES.
THANK YOU also goes out to all the players, participants, spectators and organizers of this year’s event.
The 2016 – 2nd RF&G NATIONAL RANKING TOURNAMENT took place this past Sunday, May 29th, 2016 at the BES Auditorium.
Some 50 table tennis players ranging from ages 10 to 65 participated across the A, B, C, and Women divisions in this annual NATIONAL RANKING event.
6 Players played in the A Division Category but only 4 made it into the Double Elimination Final round of the competition. These included Taye Parkinson, Amiri Hoare, Latrell Solis and Jorge Espat.
After heated matches between these top players the final results were as follows:
1. Taye Parkinson
2. Amiri Hoare
3. Latrell Solis
4. Jorge Espat
In the B Division Category 12 of the B Category players competed in a Round Robin classification event with the top 7advancing to the Double Elimination FINALS. These included Rohit Pagarani, Luis Bardalez, Joshua Gegg, Kevin Chen, Taye Parkinson, Marion Usher, and Jorge Espat. Taye Parkinson made his way to the finals undefeated overcoming Kevin Chen, Jorge Espat, and Joshua Gegg. Rohit Pagarani, made his way back to the finals after his first loss to Joshua Gegg in the top half of the draw, by beating out Kevin Chen, Jorge Espat, and by beating Joshua Gegg in their second meet in the Loser’s Bracket.
The Final results were as follows:
1. Taye Parkinson
2. Rohit Pagarani
3. Joshua Gegg
4. Jorge Espat
In the C Division Category 5 players advanced to a Double Elimination FINALS. Up and coming Junior Devesh Hukmani had his eyes set on his first RF&G Title and played some of his best yet. He beat Kelly Liu, Mihir Karnani, and Mihir Karnani again all 3-0, to win this year’s C Division title.
The results were as follows:
1. Devesh Hukmani
2. Mihir Karnani
3. Manuel Castellanos
4. Malachi Crawford
In the Women’s Division 8 females vied for the top spots. After the round robin was completed 4 females made it into the main draw. These included Petie Matus, Kelly Liu, Afeni Lamb, and Su Sen.
Petie Matus, Current number 1 female in Belize, was forced to make her way back up the losing bracket after falling to Su Sen in the top bracket semifinals. In the finals Su Sen played Petie Matus, and lost 3-0. Because of the Double Elimination Format they would play yet again. Petie Matus, came out victorius winning the title over Su Sen in this final match with a score of 3 to 0.
Final Results were as follows:
1. Petie Matus
2. Su Sen
3. Kelly Lui
4. Afeni Lamb
The event ended with trophies being awarded to all winners by BTTA Director, Yasser Musa and with the help of Ms. Sonia Tun, RF&G Insurance representative.
This is the 6th year that RF&G Insurance has sponsored this event, and they have promised to remain committed to our events and our development for years to come. We thank them greatly for their support.
We'd like to also give a big thanks to all the players, spectators, organizers and supporters for making this past event another successful tournament.
The 2016 – 4th Annual Don Omario's TOP 32 18UNDER CUP took place this Saturday, April 16, 2016 at the BES Auditorium, "the home of table tennis".
The TOP 32 best 18UNDER junior players started out in a Double Elimination Format event with defending Champion and #1 ranked junior, Latrell Solis; 2015 junior player of the year, Taye Parkinson; and 2016 Primary School Finalist, Terry Su all included in the list of participants.
Latrell Solis being the defendinig champion is looking for his second win this year towards keeping the coveted cup. Winning three years in a row will do just that. He would face stiff competition however as all the juniors are hungry for the cup as well, so games were expected to be really heated and competitive. Other top juniors seeking out the cup included Amiri Hoare who recently placed fourth in the A division (1st in B Division) at the 2016 1st Biannual RF&G National Ranking Tournament, Joshua Gegg who placed 2nd in the B Division, and Kevin Chen and Rohit Pagarani who placed 1st and 2nd in Division C of the same event.
Latrell Solis managed to make it to the quarterfinals of the loser's bracket by defeating Denzel Young (3-0) and Devesh Hukmani (3-2), before falling to Taye Parkinson in the winner's bracket (0-3), sending him down to the loser's bracket where he played Kevin Chen, winning 3-2. His next match would be Rohit Pagarani where he’d try and attempt to continue to make his run to the finals. Unfortunately for him, Rohit Pagarani managed to pull off the win beating Solis 3 games to 1, putting Solis in fourth place for this year's event.
Taye Parkinson made an impressive run this Tournament being the youngest of the finalists at only 10 years old. Taye is #1 in the 12 and Under age division, but he has consistently shown to be competitive even in the older age divisions, recently having placed third in the A division of the 2016 1st Biannual RF&G national ranking tournament just a week prior to this event. With the confidence from this win he managed to reach the finals defeating Daryl Palacio (3-2), Luis Bardalez (3-1), Latrell Solis (3-0), and Amiri Hoare (3-0).
#2 seed, Amiri Hoare, made his way to the finals with wins over Kevin Chen (3-2), Joshua Gegg (3-1) and Desire Amagwula (3-0) in the winner's bracket. He lost to Taye Parkinson 2-3, forcing him into the losers bracket where he managed to work his way back into the finals by defeating Rohit Pagarani 3-2. In the finals he met Taye Parkinson yet again. To win the title he would need to overcome Taye Parkinson two times.
Taye Parkinson and Amiri Hoare battled it out in finals showcasing excellent play from both sides. Taye Parkinson immediately came out with aggressive attacks winning the first two games. Amiri in response to Taye’s gameplan, decided to put some pressure of his own on to Taye by upping his game becoming more aggressive. This paid off tremendously as Taye began with several unforced errors, the added pressure clearly getting to him. In the fifth game Amiri could see the finish line with him at 8-4 over Taye Parkinson, but as the pressure began to build up, Taye seemed to be the lesser affected. Taye slowly made his way back into the game and eventually pulled off the win 12-10 in the final game of the match.
The final results were as follows:
2016 – 4th Annual Don Omario's TOP 32 CUP
1st – Taye Parkinson
2nd – Amiri Hoare
3rd – Rohit Pagarani
4th – Latrell Solis
Trophies and the Championship CUP were presented to the winners on behalf of the Sponsors "Travellers" by BTTA President Tux Vasquez.
CONGRATULATION to the winners and a special THANK YOU to the Sponsors "Travellers" for their continued sponsorship and support in the development of table tennis in the junior players.THANK YOU also goes out to all the players, parents, spectators and organizers of this event.
Friday, April 15 2016
The 2016 5th Annual DUTCH LADY Primary School Table Tennis Tournament took place this past Friday, April 15, 2016 at the BES Auditorium.
This year over 70 students participated from 6 of our local primary schools. These included St. Joseph, Trinity Methodist, St. Mary?s, Hummingbird, Belize Elementary, and Wesley Upper Primary.
This year was also the second year that the primary school tournament has included a Girls Division with 17 girls from 4 different primary schools participating. These schools included Belize Elementary, Wesley Upper, St. Joseph, and Hummingbird.
The format for the boys division of this year?s tournament was a Round Robin, where the number one player from each group would advance to a Main Double Elimination Draw, and the number two player from each group would advance to a Single Knockout Consolation Draw. This format was similarly used for the Girls Divisions except where the top two from each group would advance to the main draw and the third and fourth would go into the consolation.
The competition kicked off at 9am with the opening ceremonies led by BTTA president Arturo Vasquez. Gabriel Guerrero, the tournament referee for the day, briefly explained the tournament ground rules and matches commenced shortly after.
Over 150 matches were played throughout the event.
In the Boys Division 15 juniors advanced to the Main Double Elimination Draw. These included top ranked juniors Terry Su, Devesh Hukmani, Mihir Karnani, Ethan Hunt, Parin Thadani, Carlos Izaguirre, Andrew Jaramillo, and Kevin Ke from Belize Elementary; Taye Parkinson, and Bryan Hernandez from St. Joseph; Shu Wei Mai from St. Mary?s; Samron Pott from Hummingbird; Kenroy Myvette from Wesley Upper; and Jose Castellanos and Jofny Paguaga of Trinity Methodist.
Top seed junior player Taye Parkinson from St. Joseph made it to the finals by defeating Mihir Karnani (2?0), Terry Su (2-0), and Samron Pott (2-1).
Terry Su from Belize Elementary made it to the finals by defeating Kenroy Myvette (2-0) and Bryan Hernandez (2-0). He lost to Taye Parkinson in the Winner?s Bracket Semifinals and fell into the loser?s bracket, but made his way back to the finals by defeating schoolmates Carlos Izaguirre (2-0) and Mihir Karnani (2-0), and Hummingbirds top player Samron Pott (3-1) who would have to settle for third place with this loss. The final was a heated match between BES best against St. Joseph?s Best. Taye Parkinson came into the finals with the single goal in mind of winning this year?s title as it had escaped him just the year before. He was very determined to close the match as quickly as possible as losing to Terry Su would mean playing again as the tournament format is a double elimination format. In an impressive match of offense on offense play, Taye Parkinson managed to emerge victorious over Terry Su 3 games to 1.
In the Boys Consolation Draw Aidan Arnold made an impressive run to the finals blazing through the top half of the draw beating out Nathan Savery of St. Joseph (2-0), Ryan Gonzalez of Belize Elementary (2-1), and Ryan Usher of Hummingbird Primary (2-1). In the bottom half of the draw John Gong of St. Mary?s managed to reach the finals by deafeating Frederick Morey of Trinity Methodist (2-0), Luis Sosa of St. Joseph (2-0), and Saahir Marin (2-0) of St. Joseph Primary. The final was a St. Mary?s and Belize Elementary match-up with Belize Elementary taking the Boys Consolation ? Aidan Arnold winning over John Gong in a tight match 3 games to 2.
In the Girls Division, 8 juniors made it to the Main Double Elimination Draw. These were Courtney Broaster of Wesley Upper; Afeni Lamb and Gabrielle Gabourel of St. Joseph; Jayda Smith, Aejelee Thurton, Sofia Solano, and Daniella Bou-nahra of Hummingbird; and Kelly Liu of Belize Elementary.
Jayda Smith made her way to the finals by defeating Aejelee Thurton (2-0), falling to the loser?s bracket at the hands of St. Joseph?s Afeni Lamb (1-2), only to return back to the finals after defeating Gabrielle Gabourel of St. Joseph (2-1), school mate Sofia Solano (2-0), then in a rematch with Afeni Lamb, this time winning 2 games to 1. Kelly Liu advanced to the finals by beating Daniella Bou-nahra (2-0) and Sofia Solano (2-0) both of Hummingbird, and Afeni Lamb of St. Joseph (2-1) in the Winner?s Bracket Semis. Kelly then waited in the finals for Jayda Smith who had made to fight her way back to the finals and won over Jayda Smith 3 games to 0.
8 junior girls also made it into the Girls Consolation Knockout Draw. Ione Martinez of Wesley Upper, Halle Fuller, Gianna Saldivar, Adrianne Gibson, Abigail Thurton, Khaisje Brannon, Audrey Moh, and Hailey Thurton of Hummingbird all made it out of their respective groups. Halle Fuller of Hummingbird won the Girls Consolation beating out schoolamate Hailey Thurton 3 games to 0.
The final results of all Divisions were as follows:
1st ? Taye Parkinson - St. Joseph Primary School
2nd ? Terry Su - Belize Elementary Primary School
3rd ? Samron Pott - Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
4th ? Mihir Karnani - Belize Elementary Primary School
1st ? Aidan Arnold ? Belize Elementary Primary School
2nd ? John Gong ? St. Mary?s Primary School
3rd ? Saahir Marin ? St. Joseph Primary School
3rd ? Ryan Usher ? Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
1st ? Kelly Liu ? Belize Elementary Primary School
2nd ? Jayda Smith - Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
3rd ? Afeni Lamb ? St. Joseph Primary School
4th ? Sofia Solano - Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
1st ? Halle Fuller ? Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
2nd ? Hailey Thurton ? Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
3rd ? Abigail Thurton ? Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
3rd ? Gianna Saldivar ? Hummingbird Elementary Primary School
Two years ago was an all St. Joseph affair with all places 1st to 4th going to St. Joseph Primary. Last year was a bit more evenly distributed between the schools. This year, as the results show, more schools are making it into the main draw and sharing the top positions at the very end. This is a testament of the development of the individual table tennis programs in each of the schools. We hope to continue with our school development initiative assuring that it remains competitive.
Mrs. Aisha Rudon representing the SPONSORS Santiago Castillo's DUTCH LADY was on hand to present the trophies and gift packages to the winners of this event.
Mrs. Rudon thanked the BTTA for the opportunity to be a part of the development of table tennis, and to be the proud sponsors of this annual event where Primary Schools junior players are given this opportunity to showcase their talent and love for their sport of table tennis.
BTTA President also gave thanks to the SPONSORS for their continued support and welcomed their continued support of this event.
Trophies were awarded to the top four finalists of the Main Draws for both Boys and Girls Divisions, and medals were presented to the top performer in both Consolation Draws. Gift packages of products from DUTCH LADY were also presented to all winners in each division.
Each year the BTTA presents a Championship cup to the top performing school. With the introduction of the Girl Division last year we have decided to weigh in this division?s results more significantly. This year we have introduced a point system whereby each result at the end of the tournament is worth a certain amount of points. Points are awarded from 1st place to 8th place in the Boys Division (50+ participants) and from 1st to 4th in the girls division (17 participants). At the end of the day and after tallying all the points the Championship Cup was awarded to Belize Elementary Primary School. St. Joseph had previously won the cup two years in a row. Had they won this year they would have been able to keep the cup for good. Belize Elementary will hold the cup for a period of one year until next year?s event where they can vie for the Cup once again.
We thank all the players, participating schools, parents, spectators, organizers and especially the SPONSORS DUTCH LADY for another successful Primary School event. The increase in number of students participating this year and the overall level of competitiveness observed over the event proves that table tennis is growing in our junior segment and that much more can be expected as we continue to move forward.
CONGRATULATIONS & THANK YOU!!!!
"The Development Continues.....!!"
After the trophy ceremony the 2015 Player of the Year award was presented to Taye Parkinson. These awards come with a school scholarship. We thank Stationary House for sponsoring the 2015 scholarship awardee. Also the Belize Table Tennis Association presented two posters that will feature prominently in our Body 2000 Training facility for the 2014 Player of the Year Latrell Solis and the 2015 Player of the Year Taye Parkinson.
Friday January 22, 2016
The President of The Belize Table Tennis Federation (BTTA), Arturo "Tux" Vasquez was elected to the post of Deputy President of the Central American Table Tennis Federation (CONCATEME) at the General Assembly held in El Salvador on Friday January 22, 2016.
Tux replaces Sergio Blanco from Mexico who stepped down from the post giving way for a bi-election to fill the remaining term of office, where all 8 Central American countries were present for the elections.
General Elections for the Central American Table Tennis Federation (CONCATEME) comes up again in January 2017 to begin another full 4 year term for all elected positions.
The election recognizes the efforts our President and our association has made in recent years in promoting table tennis in Belize; the small Central American country that has progressed from zero to competing on the international stage.
The recent development of our junior players since 2013 was also recognized during the election process in Salvador.
Leonel Aguilar, from El Salvador, remains the President of the Central American Table Tennis Federation (CONCATEME)
January 20th to the 23rd, 2016
Belize attended the Central American U15 & U18 Table Tennis Championships in El Salvador. Six juniors, Rohit Pagarani, Latrell Solis, Amiri Hoare, Joshua Gegg, Kevin Chen, and Harsh Khatwani participated in three categories at the event; Team, Singles, and Doubles. Rohit Pagarani, Latrell Solis, and Amiri Hoare participated in the U15 category, while Joshua Gegg, Kevin Chen, and Harsh Khatwani participated in the U18 Division.
The tournament kicked off with the Team Event on the first day with round robin matches. For both Age divisions all 7 participating countries were placed into one large group. The group consisted of El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panamá, Costa Rica, México, and Belize. Belize played all countries in the round robin in back to back matches. Matches were very close with several games going to Belize; however, Belize was unable to secure any overall win against any of our neighbours. Our juniors had a difficult time getting into a rhythm especially with this being the first time on the international stage for the majority of the players. Matches were tough, but it was a great experience for our young players.
On the second day Rohit Pagarani and Latrell Solis played in the U15 doubles event, while Joshua Gegg and Kevin Chen, and Amiri Hoare andHarsh Khatwani played in the U18 doubles event. This event utilized a straight knockout format. In the U18 category both Joshua Gegg/Kevin Chen and Amiri Hoare/Harsh Khatwani fell in the Round of 16 to El Salvador and Costa Rica respectively.
In the U15 Category, Rohit Pagarani and Latrell Solis made it to the Quarterfinals playing Nicaragua?s Junior Castro and Emanuel Gomez. They lost 3-0 (7-11, 13-11, and 11-9 in the final game). Games were extremely close, but the more experienced Nicaragua took the match in the end leaving Belize with fourth place.
On the third day of competition the singles event kicked off. This event comprised of two stages, qualifiers followed by a straight single elimination knockout. Each junior was placed into separate groups by age categories. In the U15 category Rohit Pagarani was placed in group 8 with Sergio Carillo of Guatemala (Guatemala?s top seed), Rodrigo Quintanilla of El Salvador and Carlos Gonzalez also of El Salvador. Latrell Solis was placed into Group 3 along with Miguel Serrano of Panama and Emanuel Gomez of Nicaragua. Amiri Hoare was placed into group 2 along with Kevin Ruano of Guatemala, and Emilio Wong of Panama. To qualify for the next day?s main draw players would have to secure a minimum of one win in a group containing three players and two wins in a group containing four players. This means for Solis and Hoareto advance they would both need at least one win. For Rohit Pagarani, he would need to secure a minimum of two wins.
Amiri Hoare faced a tough group having to compete against Guatemala?s and Panama?s toughest players. He put up a good fight but was unable to overcome the competition losing his matches 0-3.
Latrell Solis needed only one win to make it into the main draw but having failed to do so in last year?s Central American Championships he was determined to fight hard and best himself. After two matches he managed to not only secure his one win, but won both matches (rather convincingly 3-1) placing him as the first seed coming out of his group.
Rohit Pagarani defeated El Salvador?s Carlos Gonzalez in his first match 3-0. Shortly after this match it was announced that El Salvador?s Rodrigo Quintanilla had forfeited all his matches due to absentia, automatically giving Rohit his needed two wins. He then went on to play Guatemala?s top seed Sergio Carillo and lost 3-0. In a turn of events, Rodrigo Quintanilla showed up just in to time to play his last match. He was scheduled to play Rohit Pagarani. With Rohithaving thought he had already qualified for the next day?s main draw he approached this final match very cautiously. He was able to keep his cool even after a short delay in the match caused by bird defecating in the playing area to win over Rodrigo 3-0. Rohit earned his way into the next day?s competition.
In the U18 category, Harsh Khatwani was grouped with Oscar Villalta of El Salvador and Gersom Carballo of Costa Rica. Kevin Chen was grouped with Alberto Gorgona of Panama, Pedro Martinez of Mexico, and Jaime Castellanos of El Salvador. Joshua Gegg found himself grouped with Denilson Castellon of Nicaragua, Harold Leiva of El Salvador, and Kendall Solano of Costa Rica. Matches were very competitive, with Joshua Gegg even winning a few games off his opponents; however in the end all U18 juniors were unable to make it out of their groups into the main draw for the following day.
On the final day, the entire team was on site to cheer on the U15 Juniors who had made it into the main draw of the singles event. Latrell Solis and Rohit Pagarani both had early morning matches, giving them little time to prepare in the practice hall for their match. Latrell Solis was scheduled to play Bady Fierros, Mexico?s #2 seed, while Rohit Pagarani was scheduled to play Nicaragua?s #1 seed Gary Castro. The levels of these players are extremely high so both Latrell and Rohit knew their matches would be challenging. With nothing to lose, they both headed into their matches fearlessly. Both Rohit andLatrell managed to take a game each from their opponents, but lost in the end 1-4. Both competitors and coaches of the opposing teams commended Rohitand Latrell on their performances effectively ?welcoming? Belize into the upper levels of the game.
In the end, despite not being able to place top 3 in the event, we feel ecstatic about our juniors' overall performance. Our juniors are playing at regional level and competitively. Our competitors had to bring out their very best games in order to win. We are confident that so long as we continue to work with our juniors we will advance further into the draw the next time we participate regionally.
Last year, we had only managed to send a delegation consisting of three U15 players. This year we managed to send 3 for both U15 and U18 categories. We are constantly trying to build on each year?s initiatives, working hard towards the ultimate goal of setting a system in place that can procure juniors who will be able to compete at the highest levels of the game. This trip was a part of that initiative giving the juniors, especially the older juniors, experience which they can now bring back to Belize and share with the other juniors training in Belize. Their participation and performance in El Salvador shows that we are on the right track towards developing a stronger Belizean Table Tennis.
We'd like to once again thank the Belize Olympic Committee for their financial assistance, the junior players and their parents for their dedication and hard work, our Technical Director, Gabriel Guerrero, for preparing the juniors leading up to the event and for working with them as coach during the event, and all others Sponsors who contributed towards making this event a successful one.
Special Thank you goes out to our Sponsors:James Brodie & Company
Without your support this event would not have been possible for our Team. Thanks