Dexter St Louis will play for London Academy in the English Table Tennis League on the weekend, as part of his preparations for the April 1-6 Latin American Championships, in Dominican Republic.
France-based St Louis will team up with Curtis Humphreys and Aaron Wilson in the men’s team event at the Latin American Championships.
And in the women’s team competition, Trinidad and Tobago will be represented by another France-based pro, Rheann Chung, Aleena Edwards and Linda Partap-Boodhan.
“Finally I am making my debut in England playing for Anthony Corbin’s club, London Academy. Corbin was really helpful in getting me to play these league matches as we speak almost every day. He is like family to us here in France and he knows how I love London and the English table tennis family.
“Playing in England,” St Louis continued, “is always a pleasure for me. It brings back lots of memories. From 1985 at the Commonwealth Championships in the Isle of Man…seeing the great Desmond Douglas win was always an inspiration for me. And secondly, my beating of the English team at the 2002 Commonwealth Games.”
St Louis won his two matches for T&T in the country’s 3-2 defeat at the hands of England in the 2002 Commonwealth Games men’s team event, in Manchester, England.
St Louis told the Express he continues to be grateful to Minister of Sport Anil Roberts for his support.
“He always responds to my calls, texts or e-mails with a ‘YES, we will pay for you and Rheann’. Without him or the ministry, I could never go to this tournament (Latin American Championships). Much thanks to Anil and Ruth Marchand in the Ministry of Sport.”
Forty-five-year-old St Louis, who captured his fifth Caribbean Championship men’s singles title in St Lucia last year, said he is looking forward to representing the Red, White and Black at the July 23-August 3 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland.
“From April, it’s big preparation for Commonwealth Games. I hope the TTOC (Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee) is considering us to be part of the contingent. For table tennis players like myself and Rheann, it is a must. I saw (Nigeria’s) Segun Toriola two weeks ago. He was the winner in 2002 in Manchester. He was asking me where I will be preparing for the Games. So here we go again with the mind games.
“I hope to spend some time training here in Bordeaux (France), and in London for at least one training camp,” St Louis ended, “which again I count on homeboy Corbin to organise.”