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NORCECA Continental Championships was eye-opener – Brian Burke

NORCECA Continental Championships was eye-opener – Brian Burke


St Vincent and the Grenadines’ maiden trip to the men’s Continental Championships in Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA, last week, has been seen as an “eye-opener” by the team’s coach – Brian Burke.

St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) won one match, beating Eastern Caribbean Volleyball Association’s (ECVA) number one team St Lucia, while losing to Mexico, Costa Rica and twice to Martinique.

This placed SVG ahead of only St Lucia in the final standings of the 10-team championships.

“It was an eye-opener for the players… They now know where they are and where they need to be if they are to challenge the bigger team,” Burke assessed.

The Vincentians lost 3-0 to Martinique twice and 3-0 to Mexico and Costa Rica, but had a 3:1 triumph over arch-rivals St Lucia.

Burke underscored the fact that six of the players who travelled to the USA are under the age of 20, which augurs well for the volleyball in SVG.

However, Burke said that the players themselves acknowledged and accepted that they have put in the hard work, now that they are considered the top team in the ECVA zone.

“The players agreed that they have to continue training and do so more rigorously, as well as pay attention to the different facets of the game,” Burke related.

SVG’s berth to the Continental Championships came after they won the Group E final of the ECVA zone, back in August of this year in St Lucia.

Representing SVG at the Continental Championships were Cluevvan Cumberbatch (captain), Asmond Franklyn, Ronaldo Franklyn,  Jad Martin, Deandre Quashie, Jahmal Small, Marcus Thomas and Delshun Welcome.

Host USA took the gold, the Dominican Republic, silver and Canada was third, thus booking their tickets to the FIVB finals next year in Bulgaria and Italy.

Meanwhile, fourth placed Mexico and fifth placed Guatemala will face off with Cuba and Puerto Rico to decide the two other spots for NORCECA at the FIVB finals in 2018.(RT)