wants strong finish: Aleena Edwards

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Aleena aims for ‘Super’ finish to year

By Shammi Kowlessar

ALEENA EDWARDS will attempt to complete a fantastic season when the curtain falls on the RMSL (Reliability Maintenance Services Limited) Super Singles Table Tennis Tournament tomorrow night at Central Regional Indoor Sports Arena, Chaguanas.

After missing the Classified Championships in February, the ten-time national champion has won every other major tournament in the country for the year.

And Edwards, bronze-medallist in the Caribbean Championships a few months ago,  only needs two wins tonight to add the Super Singles title to the crowns she captured in the National Championships, Tobago Open and Silver Bowl.

After halting former national champion Natalie Montes 11-9, 11-8, 11-6 in the knockout round on Sunday to move into the “Big 5”, the University of Trinidad & Tobago player defeated her mother Verna 11-8, 11-6, 11-9 and Merle Baggoo, a national champ from the 1960s, 11-9, 11-3, 8-11, 11-6.

However Edwards has her two toughest opponents to deal with tonight, Linda Partap-Boodhan, also unbeaten from two in the round-robin “Big 5” and Brittany Joseph, who has won two of her three matches.

“Classified” champ Boodhan, who won “Caribbean” team gold alongside Edwards and Rheann Chung, has been the in-form player of the final stage, brushing aside Baggoo 11-2, 11-8, 11-8 and dismissing Joseph with surprising ease 11-4, 11-5, 11-6.

Joseph, who was crowned national champ at age 14 last year, is still in contention for the title however, as she edged Baggoo in three close sets (11-9, 13-11, 11-9) and turned back Verna Edwards 11-8, 11-8, 11-6.

Krystle Harvey topped a group, which included Caribbean under-13 champ Jasher De Gannes, but both players were eliminated as they competed in the knockout round for places in the “Big 5.”

Barbados national player Harvey was beaten 11-5, 11-7, 11-9 by Baggoo, while Silver Bowl runner-up De Gannes, an under-13 bronze-medallist in the recent Latin American Championships, went under 11-9, 11-7, 14-16, 11-4 against Joseph.

First serve is 6.30 p.m. tomorrow in the tournament dedicated to the memory of recently-deceased former national champ Gordon Delph, and the action will also include the men’s round-robin “Big 6” from the start.

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