NASSAU, BAHAMAS- The Bahamas turned in a strong performance at the 2019 Goodwill Games swim meet, which wrapped on Monday in Suriname.
Consisting of just 19 members, The Bahamas finished fifth overall with 33 medals- five gold, 17 silver and 11 bronze. The Bahamas was the only country to finish in the top five without a full 40-member team.
The squad arrived back in Nassau last night, and according to team organizers, the Goodwill Games was a good testing ground for athletes looking to make the CARIFTA team next year.
“A lot of these kids really got the chance to see what it takes to be a national team member,” said team coach Shirley Mireault. “The kids worked hard to prepare for the meet, and I can say that the majority of these kids will go on to represent the country at CARIFTA in the very near future. We had swimmer like Marvin Johnson and a few other standouts that swam for years with this team, so, it shows that it truly is a good prep meet for athletes looking to move on to another national team.”
The meet featured five age categories- eight-and-under, 9-10, 11-12, 13-14 and 15-17.
In addition to The Bahamas and Suriname, other competing countries included St. Lucia, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada and Barbados.
“It was truly a great performance that these 19 athletes put on while representing the country in Suriname,” said travelling parent Don Saunders. “It was a great experience for a lot of these kids making the national team for the first time. It’s a good chance for them to see who they’ll be taking on in the region for basically the next four years. It’s a good proving ground and I was impressed by some of the performances at the games.
Despite this being the 25th edition of the meet, this is just The Bahamas’ fifth time participating, and just the second time as a full member.