Monday, April 22, 2024

Hard opener


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TEN-TIME Caribbean Volleyball Championship (CVC) kings Barbados had to call on all of their experience to halt Guadeloupe in five sets in the opening game of the regional competition in Suriname yesterday.Barbados, who lost the title for the first time in 2008 at home, needed to come from two sets down to stop Guadeloupe 21-25, 25-17, 21-25, 25-15, 15-12.  The experienced captain Elwyn Oxley was Barbados’ best scorer with 15 points made up of 11 kills. Fabian Cox contributed 12 kills.Barbados’ second game will be against the Netherlands Antilles tomorrow which could be another bruiser as the Nertherlands have defeated the Bajans twice in previous preliminary games.  Needs more supportOxley, who is yet to fully recover from the flu bug which he picked up at the recent CAC Games in Puerto Rico, will need greater support from his other attackers.During the opening match, Barbados suffered as a result of setters Alain London and Dale Addison being unable to synchronise with middle players Romel Agard and Damien Danzell.  The blocking will also be tested with six-foot, six-inch Agard being Barbados’ best blocker with just five blocks in five sets.Barbados’ women will start their campaign this evening with a battle against former queens, the Bahamas at 6 p.m. The Bahamas and Barbados had featured in the CVC finals in 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995 with the Bahamas winning in 1992 in Jamaica and 1995 in Barbados.Worrying conditionsMeanwhile, head of the Barbados delegation, Roxanne Forte, who is also second vice-president of the Barbados Volleyball Association, told NATIONSPORT that the conditions in Suriname were worrying with the rooms giving off a putrid smell which forced some of the players to bunk up eight persons to one of the better smelling rooms.The ordeal started on Saturday morning when the Barbados contingent reached the South American country at 1 a.m. but did not get to bed before 6 a.m. as the rooms were not sorted out. “Our hosts were apparently comfortable with the smell in the rooms and they could not understand our concern,” Forte said.“We opted to bunk up in some of the better smelling rooms and on Saturday morning we sourced disinfectant wipes and sprays to make the rooms habitable.”The tour head indicated that attempts were still being made to clean up the rooms and to try to make the players and management reasonably comfortable. (KB)


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