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Chapman serves up Squash remedy

Chapman serves up Squash remedy


In order for the sport of Squash in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) to move to another level, a concerted effort must be made to get young players to the United States into schools and colleges.

That’s the view of Head of the OECS Squash Association Mark Chapman{{more}}. He made his opinion known in an interview with SEARCHLIGHT last Saturday morning at the National Squash Center at Paul’s Avenue at the opening of the 2007 OECS Junior Squash Championship.

The British Virgin Islander said “it is fundamental that we get players out to the US schools and colleges to get professional coaching in order to get to the next level”.

Chapman singled out Vincentian Shane Slater who has been the beneficiary of such exposure as indicative of the rewards of constant top level competition.

“Lots of players have to do that”, Chapman opined.

He said that this aspect must be part of the action plan of all the member states that are involved in the sport.

“I plan to share this with the other colleagues as part of the way forward for Squash in the OECS”, Chapman added.

The sub -regional Squash boss also suggested that the other four territories actively involved in the sport, pattern the operations of St. Vincent and the Grenadines Squash Association.

“St. Vincent and the Grenadines have a good financial structure, really, really good public relations with the sponsors; the courts themselves are exceptional; they have a full time coach; a strategic plan which is bringing young kids through; the way they structure their organisation, that’s got to be the way”, Chapman said.

He said hence the reason, “At the Caribbean competitions the kids from St. Vincent and the Grenadines … are always remarkable”.

Chapman, who was also here as the Manager of the British Virgin Islands team, said that the other constraint of development of squash in the other territories of the OECS was the unavailability of squash courts hence they are concentrating on those that have.

Despite this major draw back, Chapman who is serving his last year at the helm, thought that the increased participation this year was a sign of growth.

He pointed out that in the seven years of the championships, the BVI only entered one player, but entered five this year, with Dominica making their debut.

Teams from the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, St. Lucia and host St. Vincent and the Grenadines participated in the two-day championship sponsored by the National Lotteries Authority of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.