Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter
The pair of Gareth Henry and Samuel O'Brien Ricketts created one upset after another on their way to taking gold on yesterday's closing day of the Santo Domingo Open held in the Dominican Republic.
The unseeded Henry and Ricketts teamed up to defeat the Brazilian duo of Hugo Arthuso and Alex Yuwan Tjong in a thrilling three setter 19-21, 21-16, 21-15.
The Jamaicans started out the tournament by getting by first-round oppositions Luiz Dos Santos and Alkimin Leonardo of Brazil 21-18; 21-17. In the quarter-finals, they dispatched number two seeds Nelson Javier and Alberto Roposo of the Dominican Republic 21-19; 21-7. They followed that up with a 19-21; 21-17; 21-13 semi-final victory over the Cuban pair of Federico Diaz and Pablo Macagno.
This triumph, according to Jamaica Badminton Association President Robert Richards, put the players in a good position to qualify for the different international tournaments next year, including the Central American and Caribbean Games and Commonwealth Games.
"It was a very excellent victory as we upset the top seeds," Richards shared.
"This will put the players in a good position going forward, as Henry was already ranked, but this has got the other players on the rankings."
The men did not do as well in singles action as they were both eliminated in the second round. Henry lost to Brazilian Daniel Paiola 19-21, 21-14, 21-15 while Ricketts lost to the number two seed out of the United States, Howard Shu, 21-11, 21-18.
The two female representatives, Ruth Williams and Katherine Wynter, were eliminated in the quarter-finals of the doubles. They were beaten 21-17, 21-7 by Brazilians Paula Pereira and Lohaynny Vicente.
In singles action, Williams, who has just stepped up to the senior level lost her opening round match to Dominican Republic's Daigenis Saturria 21-18; 21-19. Wynter made it to the quarter-finals where she was stopped by Iris Wang of the United States 21-7, 21-4.
The team is slated to return to the island tonight.