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INDEX


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

St. Lucia All Set for Junior Tennis Finals

Volleyball Women Lose, Men to Meet Barbados Again in Semis

Top Seeds Advance at Coca-Cola Junior Tennis

Junior International Tennis Hits St. Lucia

St. Lucian Men Upset Barbados in Volleyball

Asha Louis in Florida on Track and Field Scholarship
 

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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

    Earl JeanSix 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 (pictured left) 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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St. Lucia All Set for Junior Tennis Finals

    Castries (August 13) - The semifinals of the XV Coca-Cola ITF Junior Tennis tournament were played on Friday at the St. Lucia Racquet Club. In the boys' 18 and under division there was a huge upset in an all-Caribbean match-up between Bahamian LaVaughn Monroe and number one seed Trinidadian Tyler Mayers. Mayers took the first set easily (6-1) and then picked up only two games in the next two sets. Monroe won it 1-6, 6-1, 6-1 - in the finals on Saturday he will meet number two seed Todd Reid from Australia. Reid defeated Jamaican Damar Johnson 6-1, 7-6 to advance. Barbadian top seed Richelle Desaldo was a winner in the girls' 18 and under division. She beat Aruban Maria Muguruza 6-3, 6-2 to earn a match against American Megan Leavy on Saturday. Leavy triumphed over Bahamian Nikita Fountain 6-2, 6-4. The women's finals will be the first match played on Saturday morning at nine am.
    Two Dutchmen will meet in the finals of the boys' 14 and under division. Aruban Clifford Giel defeated St. Lucian Azan St Rose 6-1, 6-1 while fellow countryman Jose Muguruza beat Jamaican Marcelle Morgan 7-5, 6-3.
    Another St. Lucian lost in girls' play, Tescina Clarke losing 6-1, 6-1 to Trinidadian Sonia Ramchurand. Ramchurand will play American Julia Colarusso in the finals. Colarusso won 6-0, 6-1 over Vincentian Lerissa Morris. One of the most exciting matches on Friday, in the boys' 12 and under, Bahamian Ryan Sweeting met compatriot Timothy Neilly. Sweeting suffered a reversal in the first set, before going on to win 0-6, 6-2, 6-1. Sweeting will play Jamaican Dominic Pagan, Saturday. Pagan beat Guyanese Zachary Leong 6-3, 6-2 to advance.

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Women Lose, Men to Meet Barbados Again in Semis

    Kingston, JAMAICA (August 13) - The Caribbean Under 20 Volleyball Championships continued on Friday at the National Stadium in Jamaica, with quarterfinals and playoffs for the seventh and eighth places. The St. Lucian men were spectators, having topped their preliminary group and earning a bye to the semifinal round of the tournament. St. Lucia's women qualified only for the quarters and a chance to advance to the next round. The chance went begging on Friday, as the St. Lucian ladies were crushed by the host nation in straight sets. Keeping the game close was a cold comfort for the visitors. Jamaica triumphed 25-18, 25-21, 25-23.  Jamaica advance to the Saturday semifinals, while St. Lucia go on to face Martinique in the playoff for fifth and sixth.
    In men's action, defending champions Barbados - losers to St. Lucia in the preliminaries - defeated the Netherlands Antilles in the quarters. Barbados have a return match against St. Lucia in the semis on Saturday. St. Lucia's 3-1 win earlier this week was their first over Barbados at any level of volleyball. They'll have to win again to get to the finals.
    In an exclusive St. Lucia Online interview, team sources expressed a great deal of confidence in the St. Lucian team. Blockers Dayne Williams (Jetsetters) and captain Jason "Long" Octave of Tombstone came up big in the first meeting with the Bajans. Kevin Jean and Dionus Augustus played well, picking up plenty of loose points off rebounds.

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Top Seeds Advance at Coca-Cola Junior Tennis
terry finisterre

    Castries (August 11) - Play was scheduled to get underway at 9am on the third day of the ITF Coca-Cola Junior Tennis Tournament at the St. Lucia Racquet Club. Thanks to copious amounts of rain, play didn't get underway until mid-afternoon. When the day came to an end at 8.30pm, there were still a number of matches to be played. Those matches will begin early on Thursday morning. Of the games which were completed on Wednesday in the round of sixteen, three included St. Lucian victories. Defending champion in the boys' 18 year old division Yves Sinson  won (6-3, 6-3) over compatriot Alexander Cowan. Sirsean Arlain was scheduled to meet Jamaican Damar Johnson on Wednesday. The two were warming up when play was called off. That match begins 8.30 Thursday. Top seed in the boys' 18 year old division, Tyler Mayers of Trinidad and Tobago had a difficult time against American Joseph Reynolds. Mayers eventually prevailed 6-1, 3-6, 6-3. Number two seed Todd Reid of Australia beat Marvin Rolle in straight sets (6-3, 6-4) to secure a sport in the final eight. In girls' action, Barbadian Rachel Lesaldo defeated Ania Moiston of Jamaica in an all-Caribbean match-up. Lesaldo won in straight sets (6-3, 6-0). American Nicole Pitts, who is seeded number two in this tournament, handed Jamaican Asha Jaja a crushing defeat. Pitts won in straight sets without losing a single game. In the boys' 14 year old division, Mario Gittens defeated Barbadian Russell Moseley 8-5. Satish Singh made it 2-0 against the Bajans with an 8-3 win over Andrew Tonton.

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Junior International Tennis Hits St. Lucia
terry finisterre

    Approximately 200 of the world's best junior tennis players, hailing from more than a dozen countries, are showing their stuff in the Coca-Cola Junior International Tennis Tournament at Odyssey St. Lucia's Racquet Club. The tournament continues until August 14, with play continuing daily between 9am and 5pm. The tournament, sanctioned by the International Tennis Federation, is one of the most successful in the Caribbean. Unlike their counterparts from Europe and North America, the top players from the region don't often get the opportunity to travel the world. For some, this is the highest level of competition in their age group.
    Last year St. Lucia Yves Sinson was the winner in the men's 16-18 division. This year Yves is one of two local players attempting to secure an athletics scholarship to a university in North America. The other is Sirsean Arlain. For both players this Coca-Cola Tournament will be one of their last on the junior circuit.

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St. Lucian Men Upset Barbados in Volleyball
terry finisterre

    Kingston Jamaica (August 11) - After four days of competition at the second Caribbean Under-20 Volleyball Championships in Jamaica's National Arena, St. Lucia's men probably expected to have a record of two wins and one loss. That was the case, but it didn't come out quite the way it was supposed to.
    After defeating the Netherlands Antilles in their opening game on Saturday, St. Lucia lost to the Bahamas 3-2 on Sunday night. On Tuesday the Lucian men rocked defending champions Barbados 3-1 to kick off Day 4 on the right foot. The winners battled hard for the first two sets (28-26, 25-21) and Barbados won the third (21-25). The St. Lucians, led by Jason Octave and Dayne Williams, re-grouped and polished off a shock victory with a 25-18 fourth-set triumph. In women's action reigning champions Trinidad and Tobago, who were surprise losers to Barbados yesterday, face St. Lucia today. St Lucia's women beat the US Virgin Islands 3-1 (18-25, 25-21, 25-18, 26-24) on Tuesday. St. Lucia lost their first game to Barbados on Sunday evening. Thursday is a rest day in this competition. Action resumes on Friday morning at 10:00.

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Asha Louis in Florida on Track and Field Scholarship
terry finisterre

    Asha Louis2Castries (August 11) - Nineteen year old Asha Louis is leaving St. Lucia today to begin studies at Bethune-Cookman University in Florida. Asha will be the second St. Lucian to attend Bethune-Cookman on an athletic scholarship; Windy Augustin is entering her sophomore year at that school. Originally from Bishop's Gap, Asha attended the St. Joseph's Convent and Sir Arthur Lewis Community College. A member of the Morne Stars Track and Field Club, she competes in the high jump (1.56m) and the 400m dash (1:03) as well as the 800m run (2:25) her favourite event. On Saturday middle distance runner Candia Esnard traveled to Dallas Texas, where she is running time trials and races in a bid to impress college recruiters. The twenty three year-old holds the national Division I schools' record in the 1500m, representing Castries Comprehensive.

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