Four-time reigning national squash champions Cameron Stafford and Marlene West led the way for the Cayman Islands Tuesday (9 July) en route to doubling their medal total in Gibraltar on day four of the 2019 Island Games.
Stafford made easy work of finals opponent Anthony Harkin of Jersey, winning in straight sets 11-4, 11-3, 11-2 to capture Cayman’s second gold medal of the games.
“I felt good out there today,” said Stafford. “He was unseeded, and made it to the finals. I am really glad I won this medal for my country. I have never won gold in men’s singles in any Island Games, so it means a lot to me. I hope to carry it into the doubles and team event.”
West also won in straight sets 11-2, 11-4, 11-6 over Natalie Dodd of Guernsey to sweep singles squash and give Cayman their third gold medal.
“Her game was pretty solid, she played a slower tempo game,” said West. “I was able to keep my game plan, and keep the tempo going. She tried to move me to the front of the court where she was more effective, but thankfully I was able to counter act that.”
In the pool, 14-year old Raya Embury-Brown rewrote the Cayman Islands short course records book in the 1500-metre freestyle winning silver in a time of 17:26.26. Embury-Brown lowered her own Girls 13-14 National & Cayman Islands Aquatic Sports Association (CIASA) record of 18:39.03, as well as breaking teammate Elana Sinclair’s Senior National & CIASA record of 17:48.33.
On the track, a photo finish saw 18-year-old Michael Smikle win bronze in the finals of the men’s 800-metres with a time of 1:55.71.
“The 800 was a very challenging race today because of the strong wind and high altitude,” said Smikle. “The competition was tough, and the first lap was nice and easy. After coming off the home stretch, I could feel the lactic build up and lagged back to save some strength for the last 100, and I started to work the home stretch covering ground. I missing the silver by just one thousandth of a second.”
More records fall in the pool
The Crooks siblings continued to leave their mark on the Cayman Islands record books, as 13-year-old Jillian set a Girls 13-14 CIASA & National short course record in the 50-metre butterfly with a time of 29.19 seconds, while bettering her own CIASA & National short course record of 29.20 set in October. On Monday, Crooks set a Girls 13-14 CIASA & National record in the 100 fly touching the wall in 1:04.18.
On Monday, 17-year-old Jordan won bronze in the 50-metre backstroke with a time of 25.45 seconds. CIASA confirmed Tuesday it bested Olympian Brett Fraser’s record of 26.17 from April 2008. On Tuesday, Crooks finished fourth in the 100-metre fly in a time of 56.77.
Cayman also saw personal bests from Alison Jackson in the 100-metre backstroke (7th, 1:06.60) and Cole Morgan in the 400-metre individual medley (4th, 4:28.84). Also in the 400 IM, teammate John Bodden was disqualified. Sam Bailey finished sixth in the 200-metre individual medley with a time of 2:27.20.
Squash singles finish up play, into semifinals for doubles
Cayman’s singles play saw both Jade Pitcairn & Julian Jervis finish in fifth place, while Jake Kelly & Eilidh Bridgeman finished seventh. Fresh off their gold medals in singles play, Cameron Stafford & Marlene West closed in on a mixed doubles medal advancing to the semifinals after a 15-8, 15-3 over Isle of Wight. Bridgeman and Pitcairn are also into semis after a 5-6, 15-6 quarterfinal win over Isle of Man. Jervis and Kelly are also into finals for men’s doubles winning 2-0 over Isle of Man.
Beach Volleyball trio advance in the sand
The team of Richard Campbell and Nathan Dack booked their spot in the quarterfinals after a 21-17, 21-10 win over Menorca. Also into quarterfinals, Marissa Harrison and Ileann Powery finished top of Pool Four with their third straight win Tuesday defeating Jersey 21-12, 21-13. Stefania Gandolfi and Jessica Wolfenden defeated Gotland 24-22, 23-21 for their third straight and a quarters birth as well.
TENNIS: Round of 32: Jade Wilkinson (CAY) lost 1-6, 6-7(5) to C. Sintos (MEN); Lauren Fullerton (CA) lost 4-6, 4-6 to A. Sokic (JER); Round of 16: Callum Theaker (CAY) lost 6-7(9), 7-5, 0-1(10) to M. Watkins (JER); Daniel Reid (CAY) lost 6-2, 6-1 to M. Fuster (MEN); Women’s Doubles Rd of 16: Jade Wilkinson/Illona Groark lost 2-6, 3-6 to Menorca.
WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: Cayman won their first game of the Island Games defeating Jersey 59-25.
Tiffany Cole, 4th, 1500m, 4:58.41
Women’s 4x100m semifinals, 1st, Heat 1, 49.01
Men’s 4x100m semifinals, 2nd, Heat 2, 43.15
Pearl Morgan, 400m finals, 7th, 1:00.03
Cayman Islands, 9th overall
Medal count: 3 Gold, 2 Silver, 2 Bronze
View the entire medal table here