Sunday 30th July, 2006

 

T&T silver in CAC boxing, hockey

 
 
 
 
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CARTAGENA —Xavier Brown produced a terrific finish for the 200-metre gold medal on Friday night that gave Jamaica a rare men’s sprint success at the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games.

Brown’s strong finish landed him the gold medal in the half-lap race in 20.74 seconds for Jamaica’s first men’s sprint title at the CAC Games since Les Laing won the 200 metres in 1954 in Mexico.

Outside of track and field, T&T collected silver medals in men’s hockey and boxing, where the US Virgin Islands also picked up a silver medal through their light welterweight Hugo Moolenaar.

T&T narrowly missed the men’s hockey gold medal when they lost the final to Cuba on penalties.

Wayne Legerton struck two goals in a remarkable T&T fightback that allowed them to wipe off a 2-0 deficit and tie the match at 2-2, the score even after 20 minutes of extra-time.

But in a crushing blow for Legerton, he missed his shot in the penalty flicks and the Cubans snatched the gold medal 4-3 on penalties.

Barbados beat Venezuela 3-2 to claim fifth place.

The T&T women’s team and Barbados played for bronze medal yesterday.

In boxing, the US Virgin Islands’ Moolenaar put up a brave effort against Cuban Yudel Johnson before losing on points in the 64kg light welterweight final.

Johnson, an Olympic silver medallist in Athens, secured the win 14-8 on points.

Fermin was also fairly competitive against Cuban Yordany Despaigne before losing the 75kg middleweight final 3-1 on points.

Despaigne suffered a horrible cut near his left eye that forced the ringside doctor to stop the bout and the Cuban collected the victory because he was ahead on points.

Also at boxing Friday night, Jamaican Nicholas Walters collected his bronze medal in the featherweight category in which Puerto Rican Carlos Velasquez beat Ronald de la Rosa, of the Dominican Republic 12-3 for the gold medal.

In the night’s last bout, Cuban Osmany Acosta beat Venezuela’s Julio Payares 13-9 for gold in the heavyweight division where Barbadian Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Emmanuel Anderson picked up a bronze medal.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Dexter St Louis was very much in evidence in his contest against Cuba’s Carlos Alvarado; the powerful left hander winning in five games, 11-7, 12-14, 11-8, 11-4, 11-5, to advance to the next round.

Meanwhile, the Cubans, already with the most gold medals entering day 13, moved impressively to the top in the medal count, surpassing Mexico with medals-won overall as well.

The Cubans have a massive 123 gold medals, 78 silver and 51 bronze for a total of 252.

The Mexicans have 248 medals, 94 gold, 78 silver, and 76 bronze, followed by Colombia (67-63-67) and Venezuela (46-79-115).

The Jamaicans climbed one place up to seventh with seven gold, five silver and six bronze and lead the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries, ahead of Barbados (6-2-10) in eighth and T&T (1-5-11) in 13th posiation.

Only 0.12 seconds separated the first four finishers in the men’s 200-metre final.

Barbadian Andrew Hinds got a fast start and came off the turn into the straightaway with a clear lead, but he faded as Brown, Antiguan Brendon Christian and Colombia’s Howard Murillo came rushing forward.

Brown, who finished third to Asafa Powell and Ricardo Williams at the Jamaica National Championship in Kingston last month, made telling acceleration in last 20 metres to snatch victory, ahead of Murillo (20.78), with Hinds taking the bronze in 20.83.

Christian took fourth in 20.86 and Dominica’s Chris Lloyd was fifth in 21.06.

There was only one other medal for the English-speaking Caribbean at the Pedro de Heredia Athletics Stadium on Friday night, going to Barbadian Keisha Walkes in the women’s discus.

Walkes had a best throw of 48.10 metres behind champion Yania Serrales (58.70) and Yarelis Barrios (58.22) as the Cubans registered another one of their many gold-silver sweep in track and field this past week.

Panamanian world leader Irving Saladino did not disappoint and captured the men’s long jump easily at 8.29 metres ahead of Cuban legend Ivan Pedrozo (7.92).

Jamaican Herbert McGregor (7.78) was fourth, while Bahamians Osbourne Moxey (7.73) and Trevor Barry (7.59) got fifth and sixth respectively, and Trinidad and Tobago’s Lejuan Simon (7.34) was seventh.

And the Jamaicans, with a history of their elite athletes not on show at the CAC Games, set themselves up for more medals in the relays yesterday, the final day of track and field with strong semi-final performances.

In the 4X100 metres, they used Brown, Lerone Clarke, Carl Barrett and Leford Green to clock 39.35 to win their heat as the fastest into the final, ahead of defending champions Dominican Republic (39.82), the Netherlands Antilles (39.47), Bahamas (39.49), and T&T (39.85).

The Jamaicans were also fastest in the 1600-metre relay qualifying, clocking three minutes 04.59 seconds, to lead reigning champions Dominican Republic (3:05.99), Venezuela (3:06.48) and St Kitts and Nevis (3:08.71) into the final.

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