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‘Super Six’ square off in Chaguanas

By Shammi Kowlessar

CURTIS HUMPHREYS will have a big task on his hands as he attempts to hold on to his title tonight when the RMSL (Reliability Maintenance Services Limited) Super Singles Table Tennis Tournament concludes at Central Regional Indoor Sports Arena, Chaguanas.

The country’s top-ranked locally-based player has made it to the “Super Six”, but so too have the three other top players in the country, as well as two leading regional players.

Barbadian Trevor Farley has not only won this tournament before, he is also a former Caribbean singles champion, while Guyanese Colin France was crowned Silver Bowl champ a few years ago and is still a threat, despite being over 50 years old.

On the other end of the scale, Aaron Wilson and Arun Roopnarine are 15 and 16 years old, respectively, and the field is completed by Trinidad and Tobago Table Tennis Association president Reeza Burke.

After winning four of the five major local tournaments and losing in the final of the other (Tobago Open) last year, Humphreys is yet to secure a title in 2013. But the University of Trinidad and Tobago player has still held on to the No. 1 ranking as he was runner-up in the Classified Championships and Silver Bowl and reached the semi-finals in the other two—National Championships and Silver Bowl.

Roopnarine came from two sets to love down to stun Humphreys for the “Classified” crown, but the Arima Hawks player was beaten in a four-set final in the Tobago Open by defending champ Wilson, runner-up to Canada-based 62-year-old David Mahabir in the “Nationals.”

Five-time national champ Burke edged Humphreys last month in a five-set thriller for the Silver Bowl crown.

The final tournament of the year began with over 70 men last Saturday and after Humphreys, Burke, Wilson, Roopnarine, France and Farley topped their round-robin groups, they each won three times in the knockout phase to qualify for tonight’s final round-robin competition.

The women’s Big Five” began since Saturday and the champ will also be crowned tonight. Aleena Edwards, winner of “Nationals”, Tobago Open and Silver Bowl this year, has won two of two, along with “Classified” winner Linda Patrap-Boodhan.

Brittany Joseph, crowned national champ last year at age 14, has won two of three, while Edwards’ mother Verna and Merle Baggoo, a national champ of the 1960s, have lost both their matches.

First serve is 6.30 p.m.

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