Olympic gold medallist Keshorn Walcott heads a list of 21 athletes who will represent T&T at the 15th IAAF World Championships which will be held in Beijing, China, from August 22-30.
Approximately 2,000 athletes from more than 200 nations are expected to take part during the nine days of competition. The final entry deadline for the Championships was at midnight on Monday.
The National Association of Athletics Administrations of T&T (NAAA), gave their athletes the full opportunity to achieve the qualifying standards. Taking advantage of this was 400m hurdler Sparkle McKnight, who not only won silver on the last evening of competition at the North American, Central American and Caribbean Senior Championships in Costa Rica, on Sunday, but ran her personal best 55.41 which was good enough to qualify (56.20).
Walcott, who injured his ankle about three weeks ago while competing in Monaco prior to the Pan American Games, has been undergoing therapy while training and is hoping to be 100 percent ready to make it to the top of the podium on August 26 when the javellin finals will be held. Included in the team are 19-year old Machel Cedenio, recent double Pan Am medallist, Lalonde Gordon, double Olympic medallist; Commonwealth; Pan Am and NACAC medalist, Mikel Thomas national record holder (110m hurdles) Pan Am silver/bronze and NACAC gold medalist, and defending World Champion and Commonwealth silver medallist Jehue Gordon, who will also be trying to make it back onto the podium after dealing with some minor injuries.
On the ladies side, Commonwealth silver and Pan Am gold medalist Cleopatra Borel, will be the first athlete in action at the Championships on the opening day. 17-year-old Pan Am Junior 100m Champion and World Youth silver medallist Khalifa St. Fort will be making her first appearance at a senior level. NACAC silver medallists Semoy Hackett (200m) who broke her own national record two days ago and Sparkle McKnight (400mH) both seem to be peaking at the right time. Most of the locally based athletes fly out today. The remainder of the team will arrive in China over the next two days where they will set up a training camp which is being sponsored by NGC.
Keston Bledman, Rondell Sorillo, Dan- Neil Telesford, Emmanuel Carter, Kyle Geaux, Mikel Thomas, Machel Cedenio, Renny Quow, Jarrin Solomon, Lalonde Gordon, Deon Lendore, Jehue Gordon, Keshorn Walcott, Cleopatra Borel, Kelly-Anne Baptiste, Khalifa St Fort, Michelle Lee Ahye, Semoy Hackett, Reyare Thomas, Kamaria Durant, Sparkle McKnight.
Officials; Dexter Voison (manager), Dr. Ian Hypolite (head coach), Edwin Skinner, Charles Joseph, Gunness Persad, Ato Boldon (sprint & hurdles/relays coach), Ismael Lopez Mastsrapa (throws coach), Dr Anyl Gopeesing, Dr. Verne Alleyne, Ian Sharpe, Zephrinus Nicholas, Nicole Fuentes (medical).