Binnie hoping to help grow squash
JAMAICA’S LEADING squash player Christopher Binnie is grateful for a second RJRGLEANER Sportsman of the Year nomination and is hoping his continued success can help to bring greater exposure to his sport.
Binnie enjoyed an exciting 2018 on the court, capping a historic run at the Pan American Squash Championships, where he became the first Jamaican to make the final, eventually winning the silver medal at the prestigious regional event. He also won individual bronze at Central American and Caribbean Games and helped the country to another bronze in the team competition, to round out an extremely expressive campaign.
Binnie hopes his and the country’s performances on the international stage will help to bring added interest to the sport and grow squash in Jamaica.
DOING THE RIGHT THING
“Just to be recognised again means that I am doing the right thing,” Binnie told The Gleaner. “You know for squash I think it is great for the sport to get some exposure and I am hoping to continue to do well to help grow the sport in Jamaica.”
The reigning Jamaican and Caribbean champion is hoping to continue his improvements in 2019 and is determined to close the year as a top 50 ranked player in the world.
“I plan to finish in the top 50 in the World Squash Ranking and will look to medal again in the Pan American Games next year,” BInnie noted.
Meanwhile, president of the Jamaica Squash Association Chris Hind praised Binnie’s performance over the year and pointed to his wider contribution to the sport through a training clinic.
“He (Binnie) has worked really hard this year and is proud to wear the colours of Jamaica. He actually at one point beat the world number 13 Saurav Ghosal at the Commonwealth Games this year and puts on a clinic for the junior squash players,” said Hinds.
The RJRGLEANER Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year Awards will be held on Friday, January 18, 2019 at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel.
RJRGLEANER SPORTSMAN of the Year nominee, Fedrick Dacres, is thrilled to be among the nominees for the coveted award and said he knew all along that he could become one of the island’s finest athletes across all disciplines.
This despite the fact that he competes in an event – the discus throw, that among Jamaicans is largely undermanned and generally unrecognised.
“This year has been a really good year. It is my best year and it is going to be hard to top this one, but I am definitely going to try,” Dacres told The Gleaner.
Dacres, who made a strong claim for the 2018 Sportsman of the Year award after copping four major titles over the past season, was convinced from an early stage of his development, that his talent was enough to eventually threaten for medals on the global stage for his country. This, he shared, was underlined when he made it to the Summer Youth Olympic Games in the first year that he took up the event, back in 2010.
His performance in Singapore served as an eye-opener and a source of great motivation and played a big role in his development into a global track and field star.
“When I made it to the Youth Olympic Games in my first year, it showed me that I had a little bit of talent and I was the farthest thrower from the Caribbean,” Dacres explained. “So because I was able to do that, I started believing that I had what it took to turn around Jamaica’s throwing.”
With his training partner Traves Smikle, Dacres brought Jamaica’s discus throw to