Politicians in squash face-off

| 16/04/2010

(CNS): Normally facing off over the dispatch box with their opposition legislative colleagues two UDP MLAs will face-off on the squash court this weekend when the health minister and the deputy speaker make an appearance at the Cayman Open Squash tournament currently being held at Camana Bay. Cline Glidden a former junior squash player will be taking on the Legislative Assembly’s number one seed Mark Scotland a former Cayman junior national squash player. With Scotland away from the game for two decades and Glidden some fifteen, the match is likely to test the mettle of both men in the game of speed and agility.

 
Will the pressures of the country’s health and environment and sports ministry see Scotland break or will the new duties imposed on the backbencher as a ‘councillor’ have taken their toll? The battle starts at 6:30 pm on Saturday, 17 April in the open air glass court in Camana Bay. 
 
The Open which is attracting international players debuted at the Cayman squash club last year. With the Department of Tourism now sponsoring the event hundreds of visiting professional squash athletes and spectators have travelled from afar to attend the games which government hopes will play its part in the push for sports tourism.
 
 “Having sponsored the Cayman Open for the last two years, as well as the recent NORCECA Volleyball Championship and the 2010 CARIFTA Games, we can clearly see how these types of large sporting events translate into an increase in business for the tourism private sector,” said Cline Glidden, who has been recently given the title of tourism councillor.
 
“At a time when some traditional tourism trends are in decline, sports tourism continues to flourish and is set to grow exponentially in the next decade. “Not only do we welcome the visiting sportsmen and women participating in these events, but also their family and supporters who explore the island, learn the culture and develop a love for the Cayman Islands. The direct benefit to a destination is cash – the indirect benefit can be years of follow-on tourists.”
 
The quarter-final, semi-final and final matches will take place for the first time on The Crescent at Camana Bay in an impressive 360 degree portable glass court improving the spectator experience.
 
Attracting some of the very best squash players in the world, the Cayman Open also allows local players the opportunity to learn from the professionals during this exciting competition. All profits from the event will go towards the junior squash programme and the upgrade of squash facilities. In addition, over $18,000 worth of equipment has already been donated by the tournament to the junior squash programme.
 
Squash isa sport known for developing both physical and mental agility and, in the last three years, the Cayman Islands has produced three Caribbean Junior champions and seen the rise of Cameron Stafford, who is currently the top ranked Under 19 male player.
 
For more information about the 2010 Cayman Open Squash Tournament, visit www.caribbeansquash.com.
 
 
 
 

Category: Sports

Comments (8)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Kniepp,

    Can I suggest that next year you match The Premier against Mr. Kurt Tibbetts….that will really get the attention of the young ones and the island as a whole!

    All fun aside, to you and the organizing team, great job and great idea with the Ministers. The tournament was outstanding and my little girl has already taken up the sport and loves it. Please ignore the detractors.

    I think that is what it really is all about….

    and to the silly bloggers…..”do someting, nuh?!”

  2. Dan Kneipp says:

    Minister Scotland and MLA Mr. Cline Glidden were both asked to be part of this event by the tournament committee. They made it very clear that they didn’t want to take away from the pro event, but we assured them that their participation would make it easier to get more Cayman juniors (and adults) into the sport. They were both very generous with their time and help with this event and were willing to assist once they saw the benefits the tournament was trying to achieve for Cayman junior squash. 

    We had over 300 kids from 12 different schools working with the visiting pros during the tournament, and a lot of them were very excited about the politicians playing. Rather than detract from our event we were very grateful for their involvement and hope that they can have a rematch next year. We also hope to run a mini junior tournament alongside the pro event next year so that more juniors will experience the opportunity of playing on the glass court in front of a large crowd. 

     

    Dan Kneipp
    Tournament Director
    Cayman Open

  3. Anonymous says:

    They were asked to play – by the tournament organizers … showing support for the concepts of sports tourism and sports in general. Good show Minister Scotland and MLA Glidden – we appreciate your sportsmanship and your willingness to compete for a good cause.

  4. Anonymous says:

    So What!!!!!!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Always looking for attention. Why attempt to take the focus off of the players, the real attraction? I think that is extremely pompous & is unfair on the players. This is a big tournament, not a joke. These two politicians should keep out of it, we want to watch the real stuff, not a silly sideshow.

      • Anonymous says:

        Mac has the most talented group I have ever seen they can compete in any arena.

  5. noname says:

    Cool!

  6. Anonymous says:

    I am betting a Cake on CG. What about the Premier and the Leader of the Opposition.