Cayman wins 11 medals at CUT Games

The Cayman Islands team returned Sunday 15 July.

The track and field team representing the Cayman Islands at the 2018 Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT) Games in Bermuda returned on Sunday from the 13-14 July meet with 11 medals and several personal best performances.

Of those medals, one was gold, two were silver and seven were bronze. Cayman’s athletes competed at the U9, U11, U13 and U15 levels.

“The performance was extraordinary. On day two of the competition they all performed with a personal best. They did themselves, their family and their country proud,” said Ricardo Hayles, the head coach accompanying the athletes on the trip.

He said their performances were even more pleasing considering several transportation challenges, including being deplaned in Miami, having their flight rerouted through New Jersey, then making their way to New York before flying to Bermuda in time for the Games. Cayman was also the smallest team at the Games.

“I’m very pleased with Anthony Chin Jr. He came away with three medals. He did us proud,” Hayles noted of the 10-year-old, who returned with a gold and two bronze medals around his neck.

His gold came in the U11 Boys Long Jump. Chin Jr opened with a mark of 4.58m, which would have been good enough to win the competition, but he then extended it to 4.70m for a comfortable win over defending champion Jules Ogarro of Barbados.

“The gold from the long jump means most to me…because I beat my rival from Barbados and I was really hoping to get a gold medal, so I’m happy,” the young athlete told He had third place finishes in the U11 100m (14.38 sec) and the U11 200m (29.30 sec).

His father and coach, Anthony Sr, was on hand for the special performance. “It was really a proud father/coach moment. He really prepared for this. The last CUT Games, he came second behind the guy from Barbados and this year he said he wanted to go for the gold and he did,” the elder Chin said.

Team captain Rachel Pascal provided one of two silver medals for the Cayman Islands in the U15 Girls Javelin. Finishing behind Bermuda’s Eleanor Richmond, the 14-year-old had her best lifetime throw in her first attempt at the National Sports Centre in Hamilton.

“It was a great experience because I broke my PB, which was 29.93m and it is now 33.73m,” she said, adding that it feels great to be following in the footsteps of her older brother, Alex, the men’s national record holder in the event.

Cayman Islands Athletic Association President Lance Barnes with Ya’Neli Dawkins (left) and Rachel Pascal (right) upon their return.

Ya’Neli Dawkins also won silver in the U15 Girls shot put. “For the first time going away to represent Cayman, the experience was really awesome. I’m so glad I came back with a medal. Even though I was aiming for the gold, at least I got the silver,” she said.

Dawkins was in line for the gold after her second throw of 9.03m but Bermuda’s Kesay Bell triumphed on her final attempt with 9.39m to top the podium.

Both Dawkins and Pascal said their goal is to make the CARIFTA team next year when the Cayman Islands hosts the regional championships at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex.

Aliyanna Anderson, 12, also had a good meet. She won a pair of bronze medals in the U13 Girls 100m (13.52 sec) and in the 200m (28.64 sec).

Other Cayman Islands medals were all bronze: Kassidy Forrester, U13 Boys 400m 1:03.44 sec; Reandra Powell, U15 Girls Long Jump 4.80m; Kristoff Clarke, U13 Boys Long Jump 4.73m; Amiee McKenzie, U13 Girls Long Jump 4.30m.

The other athletes representing Cayman were Jaiden Reid, Jeleah Maize, who also turned in solid performances over the two days of competition.

The next CUT Games will be held in Grenada in 2020.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.