TT’s Under-16 water polo boys team opened their quest for gold at the Central American and Caribbean Amateur Swimming Confederation (CCCAN) Water Polo Championships on Thursday with a heavy loss to Puerto Rico and a convincing win over hosts El Salvador.
Their third qualifying fixture against the Bahamas was played last evening. The fourth and final qualifying fixture will be played today at 10 am. Even before reaching the pool, it was rough start for the TT contingent, who arrived at their hotel on Wednesday night but could not enter because of protests taking place around their base, which is located a short distance from the competition venue. They were then relocated to another hotel located a half-hour driving distance away.
In their opening match, the TT team suffered a 20-10 loss to Puerto Rico, one of the region’s traditionally stronger teams. Later that evening, TT rebounded with a convincing display against the hosts El Salvador, winning 18-10.
Head coach of the team, Charissa Hackshaw said she was pleased with the way the team responded after the opening loss.
“The first half they were a little timid (against Puerto Rico) but as we go through the second half, they got their rhythm and played as a team,” she said.
“I knew the first game was going to be tough but they did well. In the second game, the first half the team was not gelling as they should, but by the second half the team got its act together.”
The fourth and fifth placed teams will also do battle today, a day before the semifinal round. On Monday, the championship match and the third-place playoff will take place.
The TT team is expected to return home on Tuesday at 4:37 pm.
TT water polo squad: Nathan Hinds, Yannick Robertson, Jordan Robertson, Dominic Lue-Fatt, David Agard, Kyron Agostini, Marvin Gillard-Bruce, Zephaniah Taylor (goalkeeper), Dante Drakes McKell, Gabriel Dos Santos, Miguel Green.