Shakeem “Chubby” Nurse of Wesley Hall Juniors now sits on the throne as the new king of the 2015 Berger Royale/Cave Shepherd National Primary Schools Road Tennis Championship. And St Cyprian’s Boys are the best road tennis team in the country.
When the curtains came down at the finals held yesterday at Blackman and Gollop Primary, it was Nurse with his flamboyant shots who slammed Javonte Browne of Luther Thorne Memorial in straight sets 21-13, 21-14 to take the best of three sets comfortably.
Speaking withBarbados TODAYafter the game an elated Nurse who could not contain his joy said he watched Browne closely during the preliminaries right through to the finals and knew exactly what he had to do in order to throw Browne off his game.
“I knew I would have defeated him because his forearm is very weak and I used that to my advantage. I drew him into the shot because I know he can’t play it properly and just waited for him to slip up,” said a confident Nurse who hopes to attend either Combermere School or St Leonard Boys and currently trains at Bush Hill Park under the guidance of coach Shibbir Greenidge.
Tremaine Harewood of Milton Lynch rounded off the top three against Sean Brathwaite of Hilda Skeene who lost 2-1 as Harewood showed his worth when he pulled out all the stops to come from being beaten 15-21 in the first set to take the other two sets 24-22 and 21-17 in a keenly contested battle.
In the teams’ competition St Cyprian’s Boys produced an A class performance and showed a great level of determination when they dethroned 2014 champions George Lamming 21-13, 21-10 and 16-21. The teams played the third set although St Cyprian’s had taken the title by winning the first two.
Physical education teacher at St Cyprian’s Ramon Greaves was a happy man and understandably so after entering the competition for the first time this year and winning the trophy. He said the school had eight tennis courts that spoke to the importance of developing the youngsters in order to take the sport to the next level.
“Road tennis is big at our school and it feels really special knowing that the guys have actually played in the competition for the first time this year and won. It is important that we set a high standard so that the boys who will play next year can follow,” said Greaves, who credited his captain Fozlo Brewster for an excellent first game that set the foundation for his other team members who played with even more confidence.
Both teams introduced their strongest player in the first set and Brewster clashed with George Lamming’s top player Ajani Roach who actually won the individual title last year.
Brewster did not seem too bothered about Roach’s experience and showed a great level of determination when he attacked the corners with good placement shots and kept his opponent busy on court. Following on from that 21-13 performance from Brewster was Dominic Browne who showed his class with several shots at his disposal to defeat Thierry Toppin 21-10 and give St Cyprian’s Boys a well deserved 2-0 lead.
It was left up to Jaden Bowen to take a clean sweep in the third set for the boys from Brittons Cross Road but Aaron Weatherhead of George Lamming had other ideas and managed to give his side something to shout about when he took a consolation 21-16 win.
Health and Family Life Education teacher at George Lamming, Alvin Mayers, acknowledged that the better team won on the day. “They did not play true to form as they normally play and St Cyprian’s looked pretty good and deserving of the victory. I think my guys let the nerves get the best of them but they are children and at the end of the day it is a competition,” said Mayers, adding he intended to regroup and come again next year.