Peter “Lappa” Lloyd

SELFLESS: Solo Crusaders player and administrator Peter “Lappa” Lloyd.

The Solo Crusaders Table Tennis Club is mourning the loss of Peter Lloyd. Serving the club both as a player and administrator, the affable Lloyd was a fixture at local tournaments.

Lloyd died on Tuesday at the age of 54. His passing was sudden, and shocked the local table tennis fraternity.

Lloyd, the equipment manager at Crusaders, had a close friendship with the club’s operations committee chairman Kevin “Cappy” Lewis.

“Peter started playing table tennis as a young chap at Belmont Boys’ Secondary, under Anthony Crespo, and with players like Sean Clarke,” Lewis began. “Peter then came to Diego Martin Secondary, where there wasn’t structured table tennis. He lived in Diamond Vale, and there’s a story about how he beat someone in a match while playing with a Chinese chopper.

“Some years later,” Lewis continued, “there was a tournament at the Central Diego Martin Community Centre in Diamond Vale. We supported the home team, Crusaders, and eventually got involved in the club’s administration. Peter was very honest, so he was the obvious choice as equipment manager. He also handled the club’s day-to-day finances, and did a good job.”

Lloyd, who worked as a cobbler, was quite capable on the table but often opted out of tournaments.

“Peter didn’t have time to train properly,” Lewis explained, “but once the club needed him to play, he never said no. The club’s coach, Anthony ‘Sandfly’ Brown always told Peter he should get serious and play more because he saw the potential to get better. But Peter was selfless and more interested in pushing the younger ones.”

Affectionately known as “Lappa” in the Diamond Vale community, Lloyd was very popular in his neighbourhood. Lewis is among the neighbours who will miss him dearly.

“Peter was a true friend, always meeting needs. Sometimes he would cut my grass, and he’s the first person I would call when I’m in a tight jam. Peter was humble, loving, giving, loyal, selfless and very committed to family. He was respectful to older people, calling them auntie and uncle, spoke highly of others, and wasn’t into bad talking people. He would always give credit where credit is due.”

Lloyd was a very good listener, but had strong opinions of his own in the area of sport.

“Peter had a very sharp memory,” said Lewis. “He followed most sports, and didn’t forget names and faces. You could have a conversation with him about any player of any era in any sport. Peter was a walking library.”

Earlier in October, another table tennis player, Mani Bhimull passed away. Bhimull was also a competitive golfer. On Thursday, the T&T Table Tennis Association (TTTTA) issued a statement.

“The TTTTA offers condolences to family members, friends and club members on the passing of Mr Manichan (Mani) Bhimull and more recently Mr Peter Lloyd. Mr Bhimull was a stalwart Oxford player and was very active in table tennis. Mr Lloyd was also a very active table tennis player with the Solo Crusaders and the uncle of Taurean Lloyd of Carenage Blasters.

“The TTTTA wishes to recognise the contributions of these two gentlemen to table tennis over the years.”

In 2019, Crusaders lost club founder David Farrell and five-time Caribbean men’s singles champion Dexter St Louis.

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