Guzman is champ in Venezuela again
SOLANGE GUZMAN was crowned women’s singles champion for the second year in succession when the Venezuela Badminton Internacional Tournament concluded yesterday.
The Cuban, representing Trinidad and Tobago, did not lose a single set from her four matches and disposed of the top two seeds in the final two rounds.
Guzman, who migrated over three years ago and is in the process of becoming a T&T citizen, crushed No. 2 seed Ana Lucia De Leon 21-14, 21-4 in yesterday’s title match after sending top seed Nikte Alejandra Sotomayor, also of Guatemala, 21-19, 21-12 in the semi-finals.
After a first-round bye, the No. 4 seed had whipped Venezuelan Michelle Zorileth 21-8, 21-15 and then rolled over Licelott Sanchez of Dominican Republic 21-7, 21-9 in the quarter-finals.
Guzman captured a triple crown in this tournament last year, but was eliminated in the semis of doubles this time and did not play mixed doubles.
The 28-year-old and Leidy Tover of Venezuela whipped a pair of Venezuelans 21-6, 21-16 after a first-round bye, but were then edged 21-19, 18-21, 21-17 by top seeds Vibieca Beronica and Daigenis Saturria of Dominican Republic in the battle for a place in the final.
Guzman had won doubles last year with Virginia Chariandy Balwant, one of the Caribbean’s players of the late 1970s and ’80s, and mixed doubles with two-time national champ Rahul Rampersad.
But the two T&T players did not participate this year.
Guzman, who picked up silver medals in singles and doubles (with Balwant), in the Caribbean Championships just before this tournament last year, has not lost a singles match in Trinidad and has captured triple crowns in the last two editions of the National Championships.