Junior netballers fully prepared and confident – Coach
Coach of the national 16 and under netball team Lawrence Kellman told Kaieteur Sport yesterday that the team which is scheduled to depart early this morning for Jamaica is fully prepared and confident and he is certain they will go out there and give it their best shot.
Kellman, who has been at the helm of all the national netball teams since 1999, brings a wealth of experience to the team, having benefited from a number of courses both local and overseas.
“Despite several limitations which have faced us over the period of preparations such as facilities, shortage of warm-up games and the general lack of experience against foreign opposition, I still expect the girls to produce a good showing, especially against some of the lesser teams in the competition,” Kellman said.
He added that Guyana could find it tough against countries such as Jamaica and dad and Tobago, who’re traditionally the two powerhouses in the region.
“One of my greatest desires is to see the sport’s return to the school curriculum so that is becomes more recognisable and regain the popularity it previously enjoyed,” Kellman craved.
He added that unlike Guyana, all the other Caribbean territories that will be taking part in the tournament have the sport on their school curriculum.
Another discouraging development according to Kellman is the inability of the Netball Association to secure releases for players from the New Opportunity Corps, a location that is full of talent. “I can recall back in 1999 when we participated at the same tournament in Barbados, we had 5 players from that institution and their performances were so impressive that one of them (Tamika Pitman) gained selection on the Caribbean team.
He said it was rather unfortunate that they no longer get permission to include these players. “These players are usually much taller, plays very aggressive and are generally better than the others.”
Kellman informed that even the current members who had the opportunity to play against them queried why they were not selected.
Defending champions Jamaica will host the 10th Caribbean Netball Association Jean Pierre Under-16 tournament from April 24-29 at the Leila Robinson Courts in Kingston.