Angels Academy seeks to progress in 2022 | Sports
The COVID-19 pandemic has put many sports on the back burner, but Angels Academy, a table tennis club in Spanish Town, is looking outward. Academy founder and coach Richard Davidson said his club plans to expand its playground, open a homework center and offer music lessons in 2022.
The expansion is underpinned by Davidson’s desire to give the young people in his care at Angels a chance to lead fulfilling lives when their days at the table are over. “I’ve seen where a lot of athletes in various sports have not only represented Jamaica but their parish, their clubs, and basically we use that terminology, we see them kicking in the latter part of their life. My goal is to train professionals at the academy. So even if they are not doing well academically, they have a skill to fall back on in their last days, ”he explained Thursday.
A key project is to expand the play area by covering a space behind the main Angels Community Center building, and Davidson is looking for sponsors. “Hopefully my target for this would be mid-2022, and we want to include musical activities as well, so we’re looking for sponsorship to maybe buy drums, keyboard, guitar and saxophone.” , did he declare. noted.
“I have lost a lot of players to COVID,” Davidson revealed. “But I’m not worried about that because I usually never advertise my program. It’s always by reference so I don’t worry about the numbers. Once the school reopens, I can say again that the angels will be full, ”he added.
Launched in 2010, the Academy has had its share of success and four of its players have been invited to participate in the Espoirs program organized by the International Table Tennis Federation. With the pandemic restricting movement, the latest, 11-year-old Keeara White, had to participate via the internet.
“Unfortunately, due to COVID this year, it was not possible for us to travel, so we had to take online classes. They sent the exercises. We looked at the exercises before the sessions and had nine sessions online, ”he recalls.
“She did very well throughout training camp and is a person to note in the future,” said Davidson, praising the student from St Jago Preparatory. White has followed in the footsteps of Davidson’s daughter Kelsey, Liana Campbell and Navia Scott, who previously participated in the Hopes program.
“It brings tears to my eyes. It keeps me motivated. My dream now is that a player qualifies for the next round of the Espoirs, ”he concluded, with a view to selecting a player from Jamaica, from the Pan-American Undergraduate stadium to the international round which includes 20 players.