Little League Baseball names squad for Caribbean Championships

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Members of the Antigua and Barbuda Little League squad pose for a photo at their facility in Potters
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By Neto Baptiste

The Little League Baseball Association of Antigua has named a 12-member squad to represent Antigua and Barbuda in the 10th Annual Caribbean Little League Championships slated for July 2-9 at the newly built baseball facility in Potters village.   

Derek Lopez, William Perez, Terrance Carew, Samuel Ambrose, Omarlin Morales and Richard Anthony have all been named as part of the squad. The other members of the team are Jose Angelo Martinez, Franklin Soriano, Jhorwan Jimenez, Yadiel Bastardo, Davisson Matos and Manuel Codero.

President of Little League Baseball in Antigua, Jose George Jr, said the players have been putting in the work and that plans are well advanced for the hosting of the tournament.

“In terms of the team, we have been practicing a lot, doing a number of exhibition games. Due to the Covid and the fact that our association is pretty small and not funded like that, it took us a long time to get back on our feet so we have a smaller number of players now. In terms of preparation for the teams coming over, we have identified the areas where they will be staying and we are still working on some of the logistics but, hopefully, by the time the teams come in, we will be ready for them,” he said. 

However, George said that the young squad will be up against some powerhouse teams and must give 100 percent if they are to be competitive.

“You’re talking about teams like Curacao and Aruba who have years in this programme and, as I said, it was only the last couple of months that we have gotten a proper playing facility for ourselves. It doesn’t mean we are not going to try our best; we will do our best to try and actually play. There was a group of guys back then, in the late 2000s that won a tournament in New York and that group had four years playing together in those types of tournaments before they actually went on to an invitational in New York and actually won, so it takes time. Baseball is a sport that takes a lot of time to develop,” he said.

Six teams, including defending champions Curacao, will compete in the tournament, which caters for players within the 11-13 age category. The other teams expected to take part along with Antigua and Barbuda are Venezuela, Aruba, USVI and the Dominican Republic.

The winner of the tournament will qualify for the Little League World Cup scheduled to take place from August 16 to August 27 at the Little League headquarters complex in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

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