Pan Am silver for Stafford and West

Marlene West prepares to play a shot in the final vs Colombia.

The duo of Cameron Stafford and Marlene West put on a display that the Cayman Islands can be proud of as they advanced to the final of the mixed doubles of the Pan American Squash Championships on 29 August, 2018 before losing to Colombian opponents to take silver.

They prevailed in a tough three-game encounter against the Canadian pair of Mike Mccue and Danielle Letourneau earlier in the day. After dropping the first game 7-11, Stafford and West rebounded to take the next two 11-9, 11-10.

Then it was on to the finals against Miguel Angel Rodriguez and Catalina Pelaez of Colombia. It would be a formidable task in front for the Caymanian team in front of a home crowd at South Sound Squash Club as Rodriguez is currently ranked #6 in the world and Pelaez also in the top 100 female players on the pro tour.

Stafford and West put up a fight with a vocal crowd that included Sports Minister Julianna O’Connor Connolly and Councillors Barbara Conolly and David Wight cheering them on. In the end, the Colombians won 11-8, 11-9 to win the gold.

“I think we both gave it our all and the difference was that we made a couple of mistakes in the first game and as we got in our groove in the second, I think that we started to figure them out and it’s unfortunate that the last couple of points didn’t go our way,” Stafford said.

“Overall, I’m happy with a silver medal. I’m happy that the Cayman crowd has come out because they’ve been amazing in supporting us.”

The Sports Minister said she was proud of the local pair for advancing to the final and winning a silver medal.

“It just goes to show that when you give our athletes and teams an opportunity that they never cease to amaze us and I wish that all of Cayman could have been here to see. I’m extremely proud of them,” Ms O’Connor Connolly said.

L-R: Councillor David Wight, Cameron Stafford, Councillor Barbara Conolly, Marlene West, Sports Minister Juliana O’Connor Connolly, Joel Francis of Ministry of Sports.

West said she enjoyed the thrill of playing at home and hopes their performance will serve as an inspiration to younger players to step up and take the mantle. “We’re hoping that it certainly will,” she said. “I need some younger ladies to come and take over. Not too sure how long I can keep this up for but I’m having a lot of fun playing the doubles. It’s events like this that the juniors need to be exposed to.”

The players now turn their attention to the team competitions.

Cayman pair into semis at Pan Am Squash Championships

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