media_artricles :: 2017
Ahye, Walcott, Richards lead Worlds chargeKwame Laurence :: Trinidad Express :: 03.07.2017
Michelle-Lee Ahye, Jereem Richards and Keshorn Walcott will lead the charge for Trinidad and Tobago at the August 4-13 IAAF World Championships in London, England. They are part of a provisional 23-member team selected by the National Association of Athletics Administrations (NAAA). The final team will be announced after the July 23 qualification deadline.
Ahye captured the women's sprint double at last month's NGC/Sagicor/NAAA National Open Championships. She won the 100 metres final in fine style, her 10.82 seconds clocking earning her the additional title of national record holder. The sizzling run also secured second spot for Ahye on the 2017 world performance list, behind Jamaica's double Olympic sprint champion Elaine Thompson (10.71).
Former T&T record holder Kelly-Ann Baptiste could also be a contender for 100m precious metal at the Worlds. In the National Championship final, she finished second to Ahye in 10.88 seconds, the clocking securing sixth spot for Baptiste on the 2017 global list.
Richards is fifth fastest this year in the men's 200m at 19.97 seconds, and would fancy his chances of climbing the podium in London. On June 9, Richards bagged half-lap bronze for the University of Alabama at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Oregon, USA. Sixteen days later, he struck gold in the event at the T&T Championships.
Walcott has proven pedigree, and will be among the challengers for the World Championship men's javelin title. The 2016 Olympic bronze medallist has enjoyed a solid run this season, throwing 84.16 metres in his season-opener, and following up at 86.61m and 86.48m in his next two outings. However, a sore back forced him out of the National Championships.
Walcott is 10th on the 2017 ranking list with his 86.61m season's best effort. But given the form of Olympic champion and world leader Thomas Rohler (93.90m) and his Germany teammates Johannes Vetter (89.68m) and Andreas Hoffman (88.79m), Walcott will probably require an improvement to get among the medals. The T&T thrower will have the added motivation of competing at the stadium where he shocked the world with 2012 Olympic gold.
The T&T team for the London Worlds also includes Machel Cedenio. He finished fourth in the men's 400m final at last year's Rio Olympics in a national record time of 44.01 seconds, and is showing signs of regaining his 2016 form. Following an ordinary start to his 2017 campaign, Cedenio stepped up his game at Nationals, retaining his one-lap title with a 44.90 run.
Ruebin Walters will make his World Championship debut in London. A silver medallist at the NCAA Championships, the University of Alabama sprint hurdler followed up with victory at the National Championships. In the men's 110m hurdles qualifying round at Nationals, Walters clocked a personal best 13.30 seconds for 16th spot on the 2017 world performance list.
Emmanuel Callender, who recorded an upset victory over Keston Bledman in the National Championship men's 100m final, will contest that event at Worlds. Bledman will also face the starter in the century.
St Fort, St Clair in T&T team for London
Two teenagers have been named on the T&T team for London. Khalifa St Fort, the fastest junior in the world this year at 11.06 seconds—a T&T and Central American and Caribbean (CAC) under-20 record—has been selected for the women's 100m and 4x100m events. And Jacob St Clair is on the men's 4x400m squad.
Cleopatra Borel achieved the 17.75m women's shot put standard at two meets this season. However, the 2016 Olympic finalist did not compete at the National Championships. Team manager Dexter Voisin told the Express that since Borel did not seek an exemption from the Championships, she was not considered for selection. Walcott, on the other hand, sought and received an exemption.
Team T&T will attend a pre-Worlds camp at Brunel University London from July 27, before moving into the Games Village on August 1.
Men: Emmanuel Callender (100, 4x100), Keston Bledman (100, 4x100), Jereem Richards (200, 4x400), Kyle Greaux (200, 4x100), Machel Cedenio (400, 4x400), Lalonde Gordon (400, 4x400), Ruebin Walters (110 hurdles), Mikel Thomas (110 hurdles), Keshorn Walcott (javelin), Rondel Sorrillo (4x100), Moriba Morain (4x100), Dan-Neil Telesford (4x100), Renny Quow (4x400), Jarrin Solomon (4x400), Jacob St Clair (4x400)
Women: Michelle-Lee Ahye (100, 200, 4x100), Kelly-Ann Baptiste (100, 4x100), Khalifa St Fort (100, 4x100), Semoy Hackett (100, 200, 4x100), Kayelle Clarke (200, 4x100), Domonique Williams (400), Sparkle McKnight (400 hurdles), Kamaria Durant (4x100)
Officials: Dexter Voisin (manager), Ian Carter (head coach), Ismael Lopez-Mastrapa (coach), Charlie Joseph (coach), Gunness Persad (coach), Ken Barton (coach), Anyl Gopeesingh (doctor), Nicole Fuentes (massage therapist), Shurlan Bonas (massage therapist) Anthony Walcott (massage therapist), Akila Gomez (physiotherapist)
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HALF-LAP CHAMPION: Michelle-Lee Ahye, right, wins the NGC/Sagicor/NAAA National Open Championship women's 200 metres final at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, on June 25. Ahye clocked 22.50 seconds. Kamaria Durant, left, finished fourth in 23.12. Both Ahye and Durant have been selected on the Trinidad and Tobago team for the August 4-13 IAAF World Championships in London, England. —Photo: CURTIS CHASE