Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Farley still ‘serving aces’


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Once the champion of the Caribbean and the holder of numerous national titles, Trevor Farley is now creating an impact in the coaching arena.
The St Winifred’s School, where Farley conducts a coaching programme, rceently won the annual National Sports Council’s Primary Schools Table Tennis Championship.
It was the first time that the school, represented by James Mackenzie, Jeremy King and Alexander Small, won the tournament a fact that was especially pleasing to the coach since all of his players are just class two students.
“We train one hour per week for each level and in addition there is a programme each Saturday that runs for two and a half hours,” Farley said.
According to him, there are about ten players in the junior programme and another six involved in the senior sessions.
“A couple of the guys made the Caribbean Championships team. I am trying to get them to go to the North American team championships in November but that is yet to be discussed with parents,” Farley said, noting that the tournament, usually held in Baltimore, is likely to be in Washington this year.
Guyana will be the venue for the junior Caribbean Championships from August 9 to 16 with competition in the Under-11 and Under-13-categories.
Farley credited the physical education teacher as well as and the co-ordinator of the after school activities, Ann-Marie McConney, for the support they gave in ensuring the success of the table tennis programme. He noted that there was generally lots of support from parents and school officials.
Understandably, Farley’s interest in the development of table tennis extends well beyond the school level and he is concerned about certain aspects of the sport at the national level where he is also a member of the executive committee.
“Rather than talk about being professional, we need to start workings towards that,” Farley said.
“We should not continue to allow opportunities to get away. We had the Goddards Junior Tournament. Other countries, including those in Latin America, copied that concept and have taken it to a higher level where they host International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) junior circuit matches.
“That brings in revenue and exposure for players because people from all over the world play in them. Our Goddards tournament finished almost two decades ago and we are only now trying to host such global tournaments.”
Farley, a level two ITTF coach who has already been approved to pursue level three certification, felt there were aspects of the coaching programmes that can be better organized.
“The coaches have their players but there needs to be a more cohesive approach as we work together for the common good of table tennis,” Farley added.


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