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Ailing star cyclist Phillips to see US specialist

By Roger Seepersad

Trinidad and Tobago cyclist Njisane Phillip was hospitalised at the California Hospital Medical Centre on Friday with stomach pains but will be moved to a specialist hospital in the coming days according to his stepfather Phillip Whiteman.
Phillip is coming off major success in 2013 when he became the first T&T cyclist to win a medal in the UCI (International Cycling Union) World Cup series winning silver in the match sprint event in Manchester which he followed up with a new national and Pan American record of 9.643 seconds in the Flying 200m which is the qualifying event for the match sprint at the Aguascalientes leg of the World Cup in Mexico last December.
Whiteman confirmed yesterday that the cyclist, who only returned to his US-base on Monday to continue his training ahead of the next leg of the UCI World Cup in Colombia in February, was admitted to hospital but said that they were still not sure about his diagnosis.
“Right now we are in the process of moving him to a specialist hospital. Right now we are not too sure what it is, so we are talking him to a specialist hospital where specialist internal medicine doctors will be able to see him right now,” said Whiteman.
About the initial treatment he got on Friday, Whiteman said: “All they were giving him were antibiotics and running tests but he has a lot of pain in his stomach and he has been throwing up a lot. That is all we know right now. His mother (Vere) and I are trying to get a flight to go up but that has been very difficult because all flights are booked right now.”
Asked about the specialist Phillip will be seeing, Whiteman preferred not to make that information public at this time.
“Doctor Howard Marans, who did the surgery on Njisane when he broke his shoulder in Beijing, is the doctor who recommended the specialist and the specialist hospital,” Whiteman revealed.
Phillip suffered a broken collarbone while contesting the keirin event at the Beijing, China leg of the World Cup series in 2011.
Whiteman also noted that the Sport Company of Trinidad and Tobago (SPORTT) and the Ministry of Sport had also expressed their concern over the athlete’s condition.
“SPORTT, they are trying to find out what is going on themselves. They have shown a lot of concern about what is going on and it is there job and they are taking it very seriously,” he added.
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