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TTO keen to 'defend' title - Forde

KINGSTON, Jamaica, July 27, 2017 - Trinidad and Tobago have already secured a spot in Third Round International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) World Championship Qualifying.


However, they are leaving no stones in their quest to retain the Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association (CAZOVA) Women’s Championship.


The defending champions wrapped up their second consecutive victory in preliminary Group D play with a 3-0 win over Bahamas on Thursday night here at the National Indoor Sports Centre, Independence Park Complex.


After winning 25-14, 25-9, 25-18, captain Renele Forde made clear her team’s intentions.


“We are the defending champions, so it’s important that we come back to defend that and we respect the title,” she affirmed.


“We enjoy playing in CVC (Caribbean volleyball championship), it’s always a good preparation tournament for us to play regionally and internationally,” she added.


Forde, the setter, provided 10 winning opportunities as her team dominated the net on both defence and attack.


Sinead Jack made nine kills in 15 tries to lead the scoring, while Krystle Esdelle had five kills in her six points. Channon Thompson was the team’s other high scorer, with 10 points, six coming from effective serving.


Captain Brittney Bonamy led Bahamas’ scoring with seven points, including six kills, while Raechel Knowles had four kills in five points. Brittney Deveaux had six points, half of them from blocks.


Trinidad and Tobago (29) committed nearly 38 percent more errors than Bahamas’ 18.


However, a scoring ratio of 75 from 150 attempts compared to Bahamas’ 41 from 129 proved significant.


“It was mostly smooth sailing,” admitted Forde. “In the last set the other team got a little bit of momentum and we took some of our starters off the court to give other players a chance and give some of the starters a rest. So the team battled a little bit, but we came out with the win in the end, which is the most important thing.”


Her team’s head coach, Nicholson Drakes, said they can improve but he is not worried.


“We still have a lot of simple things that we need to deal with. That is not going to take a lot of time because the team is accustomed to playing, they know for themselves what they need to do,” he said. “However, we need to be able to recognise that these things can happen and we need to deal with it quickly.”


Continuing, Drakes noted team spirit and their ability to leverage a tournament.


“Look for good things coming from the team. The team is in high spirits, they know how to pace themselves going onto the final,” he said.