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INDEX


Women's National Volleyball Team in Abeyance

St. Lucia Team Heading for Windwards Basketball

Sinson Keeps St. Lucian Hopes Alive in Trinidad

OECS Juniors Playing Well at C'bbean Am Golf

St. Lucians Advance in T'dad Junior Tennis

OECS Distance Running Bonanza later this year

Three St. Lucians Advance in T'dad Tennis

Under Sixteen Netballers Set for Caribbean Champs

Twenty One  Eliminated from H'ken FA Cup

PFL Football in St. Lucia

St. Lucians Occupy  Middle  Road at Junior Volleyball Champs

Sharon Wiliams the Latest Addition to Foreign Legion

Sinson and Arlain for Trinidad Tennis

John Antoine: St. Lucian Aerobics Professional
 

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Women's National Volleyball Team in Abeyance

    (August 25) - The St. Lucia Amateur Volleyball Association is holding back on naming a squad of some twenty players for the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States Women's Tournament. The squad was to have gone into training this week for the competition which begins in September in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
    St. Lucia has historically dominated the OECS competition, but that record could well be in jeopardy if a team isn't called up soon. The sticking point is the coach of the national team. None has been named, and the most obvious candidate for the job - Guy Brown - will be out of state during the run-up to the tournament. A second candidate has been approached by an executive member of the Association, but Association president Brian Louisy wants to have the final say on the coaching situation. Up to the time of writing, Louisy had yet to issue an official statement concerning the coaching situation. The team could be named later this week.

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St. Lucia Team Heading for Windwards Basketball

    St. Lucia's senior national basketball team is getting ready for this weekend's Windward Island Championships in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Twelve players were named to the national side over the weekend, and on Monday night one of the twelve was dropped for disciplinary reasons. This team already has enough problems to deal with, and losing a vital player at this stage does not bode well.
    1. That's Julian Thomas' position. The point guard, the conductor of this twelve man orchestra. Only thing is, Julian's out of tune with coach Matthew (Fudge) Raphael. Thomas, the only true point guard on the national team, was dropped on Monday.
    2. Jamal Prospere's normal starting position is off guard, but the versatile Hellraiser swingman have to restrain his instinct for shooting the ball. Prospere will be playing point for the national team in St. Vincent, unless (or until) a true point guard is drafted in.
    3. There are three members of the Courts Jets club on this national side. Khali James is one of them. In the absence of Sherman Barthelmy (Central Missouri State University) and given that Propsere will be playing point, Khali's the small forward by default.
    4. Here's where things get really interesting. All four of this team's power forwards are undersized. Last year Fudge rotated Ewan Auguste (Washburn University) and Desmond Vidal. Auguste remained in Kansas this year,and St. Lucia will struggle in the post.
    5. They'll struggle even more given that Mervin (Yogi) Leo and Marcellus (Bax) Stiede are also missing. Vidal will play hard, and he'll make an attempt at every board, but he's better suited to a backup role. Even with Ewan, Bax and Yogi (all three are 6'8" tall) St. Lucia had one of the smaller teams in the tournament last year.
    The St. Lucians will find the going tough in this tournament, and not just because of their lack of size or the fact that they don't have a true floor leader. One official of the Amateur Basketball Association said recently that "these guys are lacking mental discipline." The team isn't doomed to fail in St. Vincent, but they're not leaving with high expectations. Here's the full team so far:

    G/F     Jamal PROSPERE  Hellraisers
    OG     Aloysius DANIEL VBCC
    OG     Gabriel INGLIS  REWOP
    SF      Khali JAMES     Courts Jets
    PF      Glen STEPHEN    VBCC
    PF      Shervon CERAMIN REWOP
    PF      Ricky FONTENELLE        REWOP
    PF      Rawle ALEXANDER REWOP
    C       Desmond VIDAL   Dennery Dolphins
    C       Mervin AUGUSTIN Courts Jets
    C       Tony POLIUS     Court Jets

    Head Coach: Matthew 'Fudge' Raphael
    Assistant: Anthony Lamontagne

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Sinson Keeps St. Lucian Hopes Alive in Trinidad

    PORT OF SPAIN (August 20) - There was plenty of rain early on in Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday, but things looked pretty sunny for St. Lucia's tennis players. Alberton Richelieu Jr, Yves Sinson and Sirsean Arlain were all due to play on Thursday in the Ibis International Junior Tennis Tournament in the capital city of the twin island republic.
    Richelieu, competing in the boy' twelve and under division, played his quarterfinal match on Thursday, losing 8-4. In the boy's eighteen and under division, men's doubles got underway. Corey Raggie and Dia Campbell took part in the first round, losing in straight sets, 6-3, 6-1. Yves Sinson will be in doubles action on Friday with Tyler Mayers of Trinidad and Tobago.
    On Thursday, in eighteen and under boys' singles action, Yves was waiting on the winner of the third round encounter between Arlain and Antiguan Carlton Bedminster. The Antiguan got the better of St. Lucia's number one player, defeating Sirsean in three sets 6-2, 1-6, 6-2.
    Yves and Bedminster played their quarterfinal match Thursday evening, Bedminster looking to make his record 2 wins and no losses against St. Lucian players. Unfortunately for the lithe Anthiguan, Sinson was in no mood to concede. The dynamic eighteen year old - who recently underwent a special training camp in Florida defeated Bedminster 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 to advance to the semifinals.

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OECS Juniors Playing Well at Caribbean Amateur Golf

    PROVIDENCIALES  (August 19) -  Eighteen year old St. Lucian Chris Taylor was the outstanding player for the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) after Day One of the 43rd Annual Caribbean Amateur Golf Championship on Providenciales in the Turks and Caicos. Playing in the men's division for the Hoerman Cup, Taylor birdied the last three holes and shot a one over par 73 to lead the OECS team.
    Among the ladies, Kemesha Anthony of Antigua is turning in a good account of herself, in spite of the nerves which must accompany this, her first outing as a senior. At twelve, she is the youngest player in Providenciales. Like Taylor, however, she won her division at last month's Caribbean Junior Championship in Trinidad and Tobago.
    (Team updates from Caribbean Championships at
    http://www.cagc99.tc/scores.htm)

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St. Lucians Advance in Trinidadian Junior Tennis

    Only two St. Lucians played on the second day of action at the Ibis Junior International Tennis Tournament in Trinidad and Tobago. Yves Sinson played a third round match, which he won 7-5, 6-3. He was scheduled to play in men's doubles, along with Trinidadian Tyler Mayers. That match was postponed due to rain.
    Also rescheduled at the behest of the weather, Sirsean Arlain's third round match. Both Sirsean and Yves compete in the boys' eighteen and under division. In the boys' twelve and under, meanwhile, Alberton Richelieu Jr. advanced to the semifinals with an 8-0 victory. Eight St. Lucian players made the journey to the twin island republic for this week's tournament.

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OECS Distance Running Bonanza in October, November

    As the year winds down, distance runners from the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), the Caribbean and North America will be in for a major treat. Arrangements have been confirmed for the OECS Half-Marathon and 10K Road Race. The OECS Sports Desk this week announced dates, venues and sponsorship arrangements for those races. OECS Sports Coordinator Michael Olliviere says that the 10K is set for St. Vincent and the Grenadines on October 24, as part of SVG Independence celebrations. The Tourist Board and Olympic Association are helping with registration and other matters. Thanks to sponsors Beacon Insurance, the men's and women's winners will be getting equal prize money.
    For distance runners, the Half-Marathon is the main event on the sub-region's calendar. This is the fifteenth edition of the race, which returns after a one-year hiatus. Hundreds of runners from over a dozen countries will take part in the race, to be held in Grenada on November 21. Insurance company Nemwil is providing sponsorship for this year's event.
    The Grenada Amateur Athletics Association will be handling registration for what has been dubbed the 1999 Nemwil OECS Half-Marathon. Pamenos Ballantyne from St. Vincent will have plenty of competition, as he seeks to retain his overall title from 1997. Persons wishing to enter either event can also call (758 453 7245) or email (oecs@candw.lc) the Sports Desk.

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Three St. Lucians Advance in Trinidadian Tennis

    Yves SinsonPORT OF  SPAIN -  Eight St. Lucian boys are in Trinidad and Tobago this week for the Ibis International Junior Tennis Tournament. The boys - contesting three individual divisions - had a disappointment on Monday, when rain washed out what was scheduled to be the first day of play.
    On Tuesday, Day Two, St. Lucia was eliminated from the 14 and under division. Azzan St. Rose was defeated 7-5, 6-4 and Mario Gittens fell 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in round one. Satish Singh advanced 6-3, 7-5 but lost 6-3, 7-5 in the second round of play, on Tuesday evening.
    The youngest player on the St. Lucian team, Alberton Richelieu, advanced from round one with a commanding victory. He dominated his match to go through on the strength of an 8-0 scoreline. Richelieu was a quarter-finalist last week in St. Lucia at the Coca-Cola Tournament.
    There were mixed fortunes in the 18 and under division. Corey Raggie progressed from round one with a 6-0, 6-0 victory, only to fall 6-3, 6-2 in round two. Dia Campbell was ousted from the tournament early on, suffering a 6-4, 6-0 reversal in his first round match.
    Sirsean Arlain breezed through round one, winning 6-0, 6-0 before going on to win again 6-0, 6-2 in the second round. Yves Sinson (pictured) got though his first round encounter 6-1, 6-2 and then triumphed 6-4, 6-1 to move on to round three. Arlain, Sinson and Richelieu will play Wednesday.
    Aside from those two third round matches and Richelieu's second round meeting, Sinson will be involved in a men's doubles contest. He will be partnered with Tyler Mayers, the top junior in the twin island republic. Last week that duo won the men's doubles in St. Lucia.

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St. Lucia's Under Sixteen Netballers Set for Caribbean Champs

    CASTRIES (August 18) -  The St. Lucia national team leaves Thursday for the Second Caribbean Under Sixteen Netball Championships in Barbados. The St. Lucians played their final warm-up game on Tuesday evening in Vieux Fort, against an Islanders side which was more than a little surprised by the youngsters' defensive presence.
    The Under Sixteen team led by a single point for most of the game, holding a one point advantage after the first quarter, and again at the half. At the end of the third quarter Islanders were down by two. The junior team wasn't playing to win, though, as coach Donna Lynn Joseph made regular sweeping substitutions.
    The Under Sixteen team lost 34-31, but their coach feels that this game will have helped them deal with the mental and physical challenge of taking on the rest of the region. St. Lucia's first game is indoors, against host territory Barbados at the Wildey Gymnasium. They couldn't ask for a much tougher test than that.

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Twenty One Already Eliminated from Heineken FA Cup

    The 1999 Heineken FA Cup got underway on Saturday August 14. Twenty one matches were played in the first round at the weekend, with no major surprises. Well, maybe one: just a couple of years removed from a national title under Stuart Charles Fevrier, Pioneers lost to White House.
    There were some big beatings, with teams like Square United, Rovers United and Freedom Brothers all netting at least five times as they passed a hand on their respective opponents. Wilbert Moffat potted five times for Square all by himself, putting him on track for a bonus of $250.
    Three matches ended in one all draws. Marshtown defeated Challengers 5-3 from the penalty spot, DCYO edged Young Generation 3-2.  Togetherness Youth were perfect on spot kicks, beating Chesters 5-4 on penalties. Faystars and 18 Plus had a combined eight goals in regular time, but Faystars scored all five penalties and stopped one for the win.
    Here are the up to date first round results from the 1999 Heineken FA Cup, which got underway Saturday August 14 at venues islandwide:

    Square United
    Rovers United
    Grande Riviere
    Zennon
    NAPA Giants
    Roots Alley
    VSADC
    DCYO
    Marshtown
    Young Stars
    Strugglers
    Freedom Brothers
    Niabinghi
    Young Stars
    Roots Legends
    Fire Strikers
    White House
    Orion
    Monchy
    Faystars
    Togetherness Youth

    9
    7
    3
    3
    2
    2
    2
    1
    1
    2
    1
    5
    4
    4
    3
    3
    2
    1
    1
    4
    1

    Maples
    Lapton
    El Rapido
    Conquering Lions
    Hot Ice
    Boca Juniors
    Juventus (Canaries)
    Young Generation
    Challengers
    Ghetto Lions
    Pacemakers
    Marcabeg
    Sunrise Stars
    Juventus (La Clery)
    Majestic
    Spartans
    Pioneers
    RYO
    Young Roots
    18 Plus
    Chesters

    0
    0
    1
    0
    0
    1
    1
    1*
    1*
    1
    0
    0
    0
    0
    1
    2
    1
    0
    0
    4*
    1*


    *  DCYO, Marshtown, Faystars and Togetherness Youth advance after penalty
    kicks.

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PFL Football in St. Lucia - A Pivotal Game for All Involved

    Six of St. Lucia's most talented footballers are currently plying their trade in the Trinidad Professional Football League, and the return to these shores of men like Elijah Joseph, Titus "Titi" Elva and Earl "Ball Hog" Jean comes not with a friendly international, but a crucial PFL encounter. The three will be sure to feature when PFL teams W Connection and Joe Public meet at the Mindooo Philip Park on August 27.
    Jean, the well-traveled national captain, is originally from La Clery. But after stints in Portugal and the English First Division, the 27 year old striker is closer to home than he has ever been. Jean provides the goals that make W Connection go. Through sixteen rounds of play, he had notched 18, good for second in the league. Leading the PFL in scoring is Trinidadian Arnold Dwarika, Earl's counterpart for Joe Public
     No less a goalscoring threat is the exciting Elva, whose mazy runs mesmerize defenders. He has celebrated eleven goals so far this season, each with a trademark somersault. While Joseph's name hardly gets on the scoresheet, some are saying that his impact on this inaugural season of the PFL is second to none. The midfield maestro could have a very big impact on the first PFL championship.
    The chase for the league is still wide open, and neither team can take the game in St. Lucia lightly. A single point separates the sides, with Joe Public in third position and hot on the heels of W Connection. Both teams are hoping to catch Defence Force, who are only two points clear at the top of the table. A victory at the Mindoo Philip Park could give one team or another the edge in the title chase.
    This is also an important game for the PFL. The non-Trinidadian presence in this league has been marked in this inaugural season. Players like those on the W Connection team have raised the bar for many Trinidadians. Playing in front of a crowd outside of Trinidad is a way for the league to gauge what strides have been made in terms of popularizing the game in the rest of the region.
    The St. Lucia Football Association is also concerned. Will the crowds come? It will be a high quality game, but that mayn't sway St. Lucians. The FA wants to glamorize football, and linking with the PFL is a good place to start. Stuart Charles Fevrier, a St. Lucian who once played club football in Trinidad, is the coach of the Connection. More young players may make their way to Trinidad in the future.
    Staging this game successfully will be a feather in the FA's cap. Joe Public owner Jack Warner is vice-president of world governing body FIFA. He ought to be in St. Lucia for this fixture, and he'll definitely be looking at what's happening on the pitch, but he won't miss what's going on off it, either. SLFA President Mark Louis has been fairly hands-off recently, but he may want to personally oversee this one.

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St. Lucians Occupy the Middle of the Road at Junior Volleyball Champs

    Before they left, their former coach was saying that they might have been under-prepared. The assistant coach felt that based on talent alone, they could end the tournament with a podium finish. The 1999 St. Lucia junior volleyball team fell somewhere in between. They left for the second Caribbean Under-20 Championships in Jamaica not entirely sure what they were capable of.  Now they know.
    The men had a reasonably good tournament, finishing fourth from a field of eight. They defeated Barbados along the way, in a preliminary game which took just four sets. A bigger surprise was that they lost to the Bahamas, albeit in five sets.
    The boys lost to Barbados when the two met again for the semi-finals. They lost again, to Jamaica for the bronze medal. Those two games were both five-setters.Fighting hard may not have been a consolation for the boys after winning their preliminary group, they lost the bronze medal game by a total of just one point over five sets! For the girls, they could do no better than fifth place. Results from their Saturday game with Martinique were unavailable at the time of writing, but they had won just one game in the preliminaries, that needless and silly phenomenon.With more than a week to play with, why is this tournament based on a group system? Surely, the organisers could have let all the teams play one another over the course of the eight days. This would have obviated the rest day, a day wasted needlessly. That format would also have meant that the bottom feeders and the mediocre teams could play more meaningful games. It's something to think about for the future.

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Sharon Wiliams the Latest Addition to SMSU's Foreign Legion

    Sharon williamsThree talented St. Lucian ladies have made homes for themselves in Missouri. Michelle Baptiste, Verneta Lesforis and Augustina Charles are the heart and soul of the track and field programme at Southwest Missouri State University. The latter two are regulars on the school's 1600m relay team, a team which lowered the school record several times during the 1999 collegiate season.
    The latest addition to the student body at SMSU could very well make the school's 4x400m team even more devastating. Nineteen year old Sharon Williams runs the 400m dash in about sixty seconds, but working closely with the national record holder in that event - Lesforis - ought to cut her time back to at least the mid-fifties.
    Sprinters Baptiste and Lesforis are regular members of St. Lucia's 4x100m relay team. They should help Sharon improve on her time of 24.8 seconds in the 200m dash.  One day, Sharon will join her SMSU teammates to help rewrite St. Lucia's individual and relay records. Another outstanding youngster, Jineil Vite-O'Neil (Soufriere Comprehensive) is still a year away from university.
    Still a teenager, Williams only got seriously involved in track a couple of years ago, when she joined the Morne Stars Tack and Field Club. She ran while she was at school,  at Vieux Fort Secondary, though not with any great distinction. For the time being the most famous person in her family is her sister, the calypsonian known as Mahandra.
    A tall, well-built athlete, Sharon is an explosive and powerful runner. She credits part of that to the fact that she was introduced to strength training in 1997. Along with her work on the track, Sharon has been working out at the Mango Moon Fitness Centre in Vigie. It may well give her an edge as she gets set to take on America's finest collegiate athletes.

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Sinson and Arlain for Trinidad Tennis

    Sirsean Arlain and Davis cup player Yves Sinson are among 120 budding tennis stars from 15 countries travelling to Trinidad and Tobago this week to compete in the sixth IBM-sponsored Ibis Junior Tennis Championships. The tournament is the culmination of the Caribbean and Central American Junior Circuit organised by the International Tennis Federation. Arlain and Sinson, like many of the competitors in Trinidad and Tobago this week, just completed the St. Lucian leg of that circuit, the XV Coca-Cola Tournament. For both young men, this will be their last year in the junior ranks, and they'll be working towards their exit from the round of eight in St. Lucia.
    Barbadian Richelle Le Saldo, last year's winner , is ranked No 198 in the world. She was the top seed in St. Lucia. Another exciting player vying for top honours in Trinidad will be Nicole Pitts, a 13-year-old American who will be playing in the Under-18 girl's age-group. Pitts was ousted in the quarterfinals of the St. Lucian competition. Among the boys, Australian Todd Reid, who is a member of the ITF Volunteer Academy in Florida, ought to do well. Trinidadian Tyler Mayers, who has an ITF ranking of 250, was the top seed in St. Lucia. He lost in the semis. The Ibis Junior Tennis Championships will be played in three categories, Under-18 at the Tranquillity Club on Victoria Avenue and Under-14 and Under-12 at the PSA Centre.

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John Antoine: St. Lucian Aerobics Professional

    John AntoineHow do we define sport? Take aerobics, for example: is that a sport? In the amateur ranks, even at the highest level, you need to be a fantastic athlete, but it's basically a lot of "sashay and grapevine." St. Lucian aerobics instructor John Antoine has been very successful as an amateur competitor over the years, winning the Caribbean title in 1995 and two world championships (1996, 97) as an individual. Along the way, Antoine became certified as a personal trainer, tai chi instructor, choreographer and aerobics instructor. Eventually, though, John got tired of beating up on the amateurs. He decided to turn pro in 1998, but it took him over a year to get into his first contest. Professional fitness and aerobics competition is closer to gymnastics than it is to Jazzercise. According to Antoine, "most of the guys who compete at that level are ex-gymnasts. It's much more intense, in that you have to use the floor and everything is more advanced, flexibility, choreography, strength." Another difference is that most pros have personal trainers of their own. As an amateur John had always done his own routine.
    In July John entered the World Professional Championships in Las Vegas, Nevada. Because of the way the competition was structured he had to enter as part of team, and he signed up with the Puerto Ricans, with whom he had worked previously. John nearly missed out on the competition, thanks to a mix-up with team management. A very spiritual individual, John took the situation to God, and eventually got into his first professional championships. He didn't perform all that well, but he got to see the lay of the land.
    Since then, John has traveled to Hollywood California for an open professional championship. He competed in four events and placed in three. His best showing came in the men's single professional division, where he was second. A mixed start to his pro career, but John is looking forward to bigger and better things. Next year, he hopes to be traveling the world, for Japan's Suzuki Championship, an Australian championship, the World Professionals in California and the American International Professional Championships. With his faith in God and himself, "anything is possible" says John

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