RHEANN CHUNG was in spectacular form again as Trinidad and Tobago’s women struck gold when the team events of the Caribbean Table Tennis Championships ended Wednesday night in St Lucia.
The women defeated Guyana 3-1 for the title, but this country’s men were forced to settle for the silver medal when they were edged 3-2 by the Dominican Republic.
After winning twice against the Dominican Republic to lead T&T to the final, Chung did it again after Guyana had drawn first blood in the gold medal showdown.
The France-based 27-year-old levelled proceedings by whipping Chelsea Edghill, the 15-year-old who had dominated local opposition in her last few trips to Trinidad, 11-5, 11-9, 11-5.
Ten-time national champ Aleena Edwards then edged Natalie Cummings 11-8, 8-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-9. And Chung closed it out despite losing a game for the first time in her 11-2, 11-8, 4-11, 11-7 triumph over Trenace Lowe.
Lowe, the 2009 Caribbean under-21 champ who has won the Tobago Open and Super Singles titles here in T&T, had given Guyana the early lead when she got past Linda Partap-Boodhan 11-6, 11-9, 11-9.
Guyana had brushed aside Barbados 3-0 in the semifinals, but T&T went right down to the wire against Dominican Republic, Edwards taking the deciding fifth match 11-8, 11-5, 11-8 against Lineth Vila.
Chung, the defending and five-time Caribbean singles champ, had taken down Vila 11-8, 13-11, 11-1 in the opening match, but was later forced to come back and level proceedings at 2-2 with an 11-6, 11-8, 11-7 triumph over Eva Brito. The Caribbean under-21 champ had earlier made it 1-1 by coming from behind to defeat Edwards 8-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-5. Dominican Republic then took the lead for the only time when Yasiris Ortiz cruised past Partap-Boodhan 11-3, 11-5, 11-8.
Like his step-daughter, Chung, Dexter St Louis won his two matches in the men’s team final, but the Dominican Republic won the other three.
Last year’s national champ, Curtis Humphreys lost the opening match 11-4, 11-6, 11-5 against Juan Vila Batista, and also the decider, 7-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-6 against Emil Santos.
St Louis had beaten Santos 7-11, 11-9, 11-4, 11-8 to make it 1-1, and edged Vila Batista 9-11, 11-8, 2-11, 11-9, 11-6 for 2-2, after Samuel Galvez had taken down the Canada-based David Mahabir 11-7, 11-7, 9-11, 11-5.
Both semis were one-sided as Dominican Republic and T&T were 3-0 winners over Guadeloupe and Barbados, respectively.
Mahabir, who was crowned national champ in June at age 62 in only his second local tournament, sealed the victory over the Bajans by taking down Mark Dowell 11-8, 11-4, 11-4.
In the earlier matches, Humphreys beat Trevor Farley 11-9, 11-9, 7-11, 10-12, 11-8, and France-based four-time Caribbean champ St Louis whipped Farley’s brother, Kevin, 11-9, 11-3, 7-11, 11-3.
Yesterday, St Louis and Chung captured the mixed doubles title. And after press time, last night, Chung and 11-year-old Jasher De Gannes were battling for gold in the women’s doubles final.