Calypso Spikers battle past Barbados for Group I gold


 ST AUGUSTINE, Trinidad, May 26, 2013: Host T&T overcame a determined Barbados 3-1 (25-18, 20-25, 25-17, 25-20 to claim the gold medal in their NORCECA Women’s Second Round Group I qualifier to the 2014 FIVB World Championship at the University of the West Indies Sports and Physical Educational Centre, St Augustine, on Sunday night.


Going into the match, both teams had already secured their passage to the Third Round of NORCECA qualification after ending the round-robin series as the top two teams, and despite a much improved showing from the Barbadians, than in their first meeting, the more athletic “Calypso Spikers” prevailed in one hours and 27 minutes, to finish the tournament unbeaten.


Leading the way for the host, ranked seventh in NORCECA was captain Krystle Esdelle with 20 points, 18 of which was kills and two aces while Channon Thompson added a valuable 19, inclusive of 13 kills and five service aces, and Sinead Jack, ten


For Barbados, Serbia-based Serbia captain, Shari Matthews was also her team’s top scorer with 14 points, punctuated by 13 kills while Spain-based Anicia Wood chipped in with 13.


Speaking after the match, Matthews first admitted it was the best performance by her team over the two days of the tournament.

“We started off very slow on the first day but in the final it was evident that we made a big improvement, but still came up short” ended Matthews.


Esdelle, while happy her team won the gold medal was disappointed in the actual performance in the final.


She added, “Tonight, our key players did not perform and we made too many errors which made the match complicated for us.”


Andrew Brathwaite, the Barbadian coach was satisfied with his team’s display as it was much better than their previous matches.


“ I expected T&T to play at a much higher level tonight, but for some reason they did not which was good for us and also for the spectators because it made for an entertaining match for the spectators.


T&T coach, Francisco Cruz was full of praise for Barbados, who he said made his team work very hard for the win.


With respect to his own team Cruz said he was very satisfied with the outcome because at the moment he cannot demand much more.