Both pairs from Trinidad and Tobago were drawn into the same group with the regional powers of Canada for the NORCECA (North, Central America and Caribbean) World Beach Volleyball World Cup qualifiers.
Qualifiers will take place tomorrow and Sunday in Punta Cana and Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, with the top two teams from each competition qualifying for the ‘World’ Championship in Italy starting June 7.
The T&T duo compete in Punta Cana, with a women’s mix of Appia Glasgow and La Tisha in Group A and the men’s duo Fabian Whitfield and Danielle Williams in Group B.
Canada, T&T and hosts the Dominican Republic, which ranks second in the region, are from Group A in the women’s competition, while Cuba, the Netherlands Antilles and the US Virgin Islands (USVI) are in Group B.
NORCECA’s top 12 countries were invited to participate, but the 12th-ranked men from the Bahamas declined the invitation and were replaced by the US Virgin Islands.
Men from Trinidad and Tobago came sixth in the region and Canadians third in Group B as well, while Group A consists of Nicaragua, Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic.
In the men’s Santo Domingo in Group A, El Salvador, Guatemala and the best came from the United States, while Group Two includes pairs from Cuba, Mexico and Puerto Rico.
Costa Rica, Guatemala and the United States are No. 1 in Group A, while El Salvador, Jamaica and Mexico are in Group B of the women’s competition.
After not competing after a four-year suspension due to a banned substance during the 2016 NORCECA Beach Tour, Whitfield reunited with former teammate Daniel Williams a few weeks ago and won two qualifying matches to represent T&T this weekend.
The Toko Boys have won four out of five medals (a silver and three bronze) over the years at the NORCECA Beach Tour, and are back after a two-year hiatus next weekend.
Williams attended seven of the ten events in 2019, while Joseph, who first played at this level alongside Glasgow four years ago, has made three appearances.
They won both women’s championships in recent Tests.
The Worlds is a biennial competition, but due to Covid-19, it has been three years since the last competition was held in Hamburg, Germany.