Jamaica names strong University Games team
Fifteen track-and-field athletes and one from aquatics will represent Jamaica at this year's World University Games in Chinese Taipei from August 19-30.
Demish Gaye, Daniel Glave, Sashalee Forbes, Rhonda Whyte, and Yanique Dobson are the members of the team from the G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport while Jamari Rose, Dawnalee Loney, and Tiffany James are from The Mico University College.
Jodene Williams, Fedrick Dacres, and Traves Smikle are the University of the West Indies representatives, while Tyquendo Tracey is the sole University of Technology athlete.
AndrÈ Clarke, Kellian Knibb, Danniel Thomas, and swimmer Michael Gunning are Jamaica's representatives from overseas-based institutions.
TRACK AND FIELD MATURING
Head coach David Riley believes that this is a very strong team put forward by Jamaica for the Games, and he said that it means that track and field is maturing in the island.
"Jamaica's track and field is getting broader in terms of participation and also going through a transition in terms of seeing quality performances outside of the traditional sprints," he said. "A lot of these athletes are in the non-traditional events, so to speak. They are among the best that we have and they are among the best in the world, and so it should be a really good thing for us that they can leave London at the World Championships and head over to Chinese Taipei to continue the representation for Jamaica."
Discus thrower Fedrick Dacres, who will compete both at the IAAF World Championships in London and at the World University Games, a week later, said that he is looking to make history for Jamaica. However, the world number-two ranked discus thrower said his growing reputation in track and field, does not make him feel pressured to do well.
"I'm a competitor, so I'm just going out there to try to give a good account of myself and try to get as far as I can," he said. "I think it's going to be a bit downplayed as it is being held after the World Champs. I'm just trying to get everything in my head right and do what I'm supposed to."
The national record holder said that he expects good performances from the team because he is familiar with most of its members and he knows what they are capable of.
"It's a strong team. These are the guys I've had meets with before at the junior level, so it's nice coming up and seeing familiar faces in the national gear again," Dacres said.