NEKEISHA BLAKE was in sensational form again when the National Badminton Championship continued Wednesday night at National Racquet Centre, Orange Grove Main Road, Tacarigua.

After dropping less than ten points in each game in the first round the night before, the six-time champion, who withdrew from the first tournament in three years last month because of problems with equipment and was unseeded as a result, hammered second-seeded Amara Urquhart 21-16, 21-7 to advance to last night’s semi-finals.

The 15-year-old Urquhart came into the tournament in tremendous form, having captured the Under-17 title and placed second in the open division in last month’s ranking events.

After receiving a bye in the first round, top seed Chequeda De Boulet, who was not challenged in the ranking tournament, whipped Destiny Rattan 21-14, 21-4 to reach the last four.

The 21-year-old won the singles, doubles and mixed doubles titles when this tournament was last staged in 2019.

In Wednesday night’s other quarter-finals, third seed Cathline Ramroop was a 21-12, 21-12 winner over Tishelle George, and Janiah Boodoosingh defeated No. 4 see Rachel Ragoonanan 22-20, 21-16.

While three of the four seeds reached the last four, none of the top four seeded players in the men’s draw were involved in last night’s semis.

Leon Cassie was actually the only one of the eight seeds to reach the quarters, but the No. 2 seed was dismissed 21-15, 21-11 by Will Lee, who won the title in the last edition of the tournament but was unseeded here because he did not play last month.

Reece Marcano and Zion St Rose also missed out on the opportunity to be seeded for the same reason, but that did not prevent them from also reaching the last four as well.

St Rose halted Sheraz Nabbie 21-12, 21-18.

And Marcano ended the comeback of 47-year-old Anil Seepaul 22-20, 21-12.

In his return to singles competition after over a decade, the five-time national champ won his first round in straight sets and then received a walkover from injured top seed Travis Sinanan.

Vishal Ramsubhag, an unknown before the pandemic, who stunned Sinanan for the Under-19 crown in the ranking tournament, scored a hard-fought over 2018 and 2019 national Under-19 champ Travis Sinanan 21-18, 24-22 in the other quarter-final.

The tournament’s final day of action starts from 6 p.m. today, with the finals of singles, doubles and mixed doubles.

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Kofi James of the Leeward Islands Hurricanes and recent West Indies recruit Alick Athanaze of the Windward Islands Volcanoes both got centuries as their sides engaged in a high-scoring West Indies Four-Day Championship contest at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba, yesterday.

While the Trinidad and Tobago Red Force bowling came good, the top-order batting again failed to deliver, as the Barbados Pride took control of their West Indies Four-Day Championship match at the Queen’s Park Oval yesterday.

Having been dismissed for 203 on the first day of the contest Wednesday, the Red Force needed a good show with the ball to stay in the match and fast bowler Anderson Phillip and leg-spinner Imran delivered, with the Pride being dismissed for 271 to take a 68-run first innings lead.

DEFENDER Keston Julien is out due to a lack of a USA visa, while striker Marcus Joseph is now destined to come off the bench after experiencing travel issues from India, as the Trinidad and Tobago senior men’s football team is scheduled to tackle the Bahamas in their CONCACAF Nations League match today.

Head coach Angus Eve made the disclosure shortly after the team settled down in the Bahamas yesterday, following the completion of a three-day training camp in Boca Raton, Ft Lauderdale, USA.

PRIYANKA KHELLAWAN tested one of the favourites in her battle for a quarter-final place in the Caribbean Table Tennis Championship Wednesday night in Guyana.

Four Trinidad and Tobago players reached the round of 16, but none of them were able to advance to the last eight.

Khellawan, a former two-time Caribbean Under-13 champion, actually led eventual silver-medallist Shary Munoz by two games to one before eventually falling 9-11, 11-3, 12-14, 11-6, 11-4, 11-2 to the player from Dominican Republic

THE two biggest names in the competition will square off in the opening match of the Steve Thomas International Tennis Federation (ITF) Masters Tournament today at the National Racquet Centre, Orange Grove Main Road, Tacarigua.

McCollin Fontenelle and Shane Stone would have been the favourites to clash in the Over-45 final had they been on opposite sides of the draw.

“We Flippin” is back and will take place this weekend.

The event will take place at the Woodbrook Youth Facility tomorrow and Sunday 2 and is the first competition since 2019 for the local gymnastics community.

Over 200 young ladies will represent seven locals clubs, all of whom have battled through the pandemic lockdowns and are once again in training.