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Road tennis decider set for Wednesday

Road tennis decider set for Wednesday SMASHING: Antoine Daniel making a powerful return against Michael Jean on the way to his victory. ((Picture by Kenmore Bynoe.))

By KENMORE BYNOE | Mon, December 03, 2012 - 12:05 AM

The battle was so hot at Bush Hall on Saturday night that the finalists to determine who will represent St Michael in the Inter-Parish Road Tennis Tournament will now be decided on Wednesday.

That’s when Curtis Jones will meet Andy Lashley in one A class semi-final while the returning Antoine Daniel will clash with Julian Quimby in the other at Weston, St James.

Undisputed world champion Julian “Michael Jackson” White, who won the tournament for St Michael last year, was handed an automatic ticket as one of his parish’s players.

According to organizer Philip Garner, that move was not to protect White but to save a top player from being put out by him.

On Saturday night, Jones and Daniel were the stars as they set the stage for what could be a smoking fight to see who will join White as the St Michael  representative in the tournament which is under the auspices of the National Sports Council.  

Daniel, with a receding hairline and advancing waist line, did not physically look like the Grantley Adams Memorial student who lit up road tennis courts in the 1980s.

However, he unleashed a series of passing drives and smashes  that overwhelmed Michael Jean 21-16, 21-15.

Jones was unusually attacking in his match against the flamboyant Shamon Weekes, whose dazzling plays matched his bright pink shoes.  

Both players gave a display akin to two Chinese table tennis masters in repeatedly returning what looked like sure points from smashes.  

In the end, Jones’ resilience triumphed 21-18, 18-21, 21-10.

Last year’s losing parish finalist Sandra Bailey was close to tears as she was defeated by Susan Scantlebury 19-21, 21-19, 19-21.

Bailey survived a controversial call at 19-17 in the second set and she had led 18-15 in the decider.  

Earlier, Scantlebury had beaten Judy Forde, 21-10, 21-16.

Mark “Venom” Griffith claimed a B class spot by defeating Damien Daylor 21-10, 17-21, 21-15  while Chester Brewster took the other spot by taking out Junior “Big Arms” Boucher 11-21,21-11, 21-15.

The entertaining Jeffrey “Bing Crosby” Layne will represent St Michael in the veterans division again after stunning Curtis “Socks” Bailey 21-17, 21-11, while Layne’s partner will be Andrew Holder, who defeated Euclid Royer 21-9, 21-19.

St Michael’s schoolboy will be Darius Gaskin, who stopped Keon Murrel, 21-12, 21-18.  

Life has been made easy for Gaskin as potential threats Kyle Griffith and Dario Hinds have moved to St Thomas and St James respectively.    

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