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Lothian expects Reittie, Parham success

Published:Monday | March 4, 2019 | 12:00 AMLivingston Scott/Gleaner Writer
Tsenaye Lewis (left), female awardee for table tennis, speaks with president of Table Tennis Jamaica, Godfrey Lothian, during the RJRGLEANER National Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year Awards at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel on Friday, January 18.

Table Tennis Jamaica’s (TTJ) president, Godfrey Lothian, believes the qualities and experience of newly appointed national coaches, Sandra Reittie and Dale Parham, will prove beneficial in their new roles as head coaches of the national programme.

Reittie and Parham were recently selected by the new TTJ board to replace Japanese Satoshi Takashima, who departed in January after two years as coach, and Lothian believes Reittie and Parham have the required skills to assist the association in carrying out its mandate.

“We had elections on the ninth of February, and a new board of directors came into being. Satoshi Takashima left in January and we were without a coach, so the board looked across the country, because we had a whole lot of qualified coaches, and we came up with two.

“One is the most qualified ­person in the world, in Sandra Reittie. She has a level-three ­coaching ­certificate, she’s an umpire, a ­referee, and a national course conductor. No other person in the world is qualified with all these certification. She also fulfil Table Tennis Jamaica’s criteria to be appointed as national coach. She has a [clean] police record, she has the Child Protection Act certificate and first-aid [training]. So we think she is one of the best capable ­persons,” he said.

“The second person who we agreed to is Dale Parham. He runs his own club, and he has a level-two coaching certificate. He is the person who coaches Azizi Johnson, who was recently awarded at the [RJRGLEANER National] Sportsman and Sportswomen [of the Year Awards], for table tennis and we think he has an eye to spot young talent. Therefore, we think he will be a good person to have with Sandra Reittie,” said Lothian.

Lothian revealed that TTJ has its sights set on reclaiming the regional title this year and ­qualifying for the Olympics in 2020. He said the board is confident that the pair can lead the program forward.

“We are now working out the terms of agreement, and that will be done in the week, and by Thursday, we will have a press conference to announce the coaches. But we think they will fulfil the plans and objectives of Table Tennis Jamaica, which are to compete and be champions at the Caribbean Table Tennis Championship, to compete at the global level, and to ensure they look at the Paralympics.

“They will be signed up to 2020, because one of the main tasks is to get our guys to the Olympics. Also, they will be responsible for all four squads, but the main thing is to carry the mandate of TTJ and develop a more professional ­structure,” he added.