Nicolette De Mille has been appointed captain of the T&T team which left yesterday to compete at the Caribbean Zonal Volleyball Association (Cazova) Youth Girls (Under-18) Championship in Curacao.
De Mille is the lone survivor from the Macsood Ali-coached team which won a third straight crown two years ago on home soil and will now lead the team in a quest for a fourth straight title from tomorrow (July 9) until Sunday against Barbados, Bonaire and the host country.
The local squad under the guidance of Cuban head coach Idalys Gato Maya, a former Olympic gold medal winner also includes the first ever player from Tobago, to be selected on a national youth team in Anika Busby.
Busby was developed by Nolan Daniel and was drafted into the team by national youth team coach Sean Morrison during a national clinic conducted by former T&T men’s coach, Brazilian Augusto Sabatini.
Commenting on the team’s chances of a fourth straight crown assistant coach and senior national women’s team libero, Courtnee-Mae Clifford said the coaching staff was very optimistic.
“We did not start of training programme until March, which was late for us and at the start the turn out to the training sessions was a bit up and down due to most of the players having exams,|” added Clifford.
However, the assistant coach noted that with examinations over, the month of June saw an up swing in the attendance and the team has improved considerably.
She added, Nicolette is the lone player who had the past experience of playing national team volleyball, so the other players are all newcomers, but they meshed very well and we are all looking forward to the tournament.”
In 2013, captain Reann Young and the towering Kaylon Cruickshank tallied 42 points between themselves as host T&T bagged a third straight title beating Barbados 25-14, 25-15, 24-26.
Barbados: Shamandra Shillingford, Xhane Greenidge, Shanae Boyce, Risa Niles, Reanna James, Jazzica Sealy, Iyana Alleyne, Dashonta Addison, Ashley Jordan, Aaliyah Durant, Donnique Alleyne.
Bonaire: Niandra Kock, Raymienne Albertus, Shardae Wedervoort, Deyanira Verolme, Jean-Mary Emer, Pietersz Fatima, Jahena Angela, Jenny Castro, Saitha Clarenda, Daniela Drullard, Michelle Williams.
Curacao: Liz Rossen, Tiffany Rosario, Sugee de Palm, Jeannivienne Martina, Dangela Maduro, Destiny Jacobs, Naima James, Jewengely Hart, Tahnee Gerard, Natiouska Geerman, Sigraina Fecunda, Anais Conradus, Brigitte Cathalina, Nadiene Burke, Esseline Brunkard.
T&T: Gabriella Supersad, Caline Nesbit, Payquelle Dickson, Tekeyah Hazzard, Afiya Alexander, Jordyn Ali, Journee Cunningham, Anika Busby, Nicolette De Mille (captain), Tsyan Selvon, Britney Choon, Neria Charles.
Technical staff: Idalmis Gato Moya (coach), Courtnee-mae Clifford (assistant coach), Kamla Elcock (manager)
Fifth Cazova Youth Girls Championship:
July 9: T&T vs Barbados, 5.30pm; Curacao vs Bonaire, 8pm
July 10: Barbados vs Bonaire, 9am; Curacao vs T&T, 10.30am
July 10: T&T vs Bonaire, 6pm; Curacao vs Barbados, 8pm
July 11: Semifinals: 1st vs 4th, 5pm; 2nd vs 3rd, 7pm
July 12: Third place playoff, 4pm; Final, 6pm
Venue Year Gold Silver Bronze Fourth
TTO 2007 T&T USVI Barbados
USVI 2012 T&T Haiti USVI ...Barbados
T&T 2013 T&T Barbados Bahamas