The Cayman rugby Under-19 side that won the Caribbean Championships and got through to the next round of the World Cup is still enjoying the euphoria of that triumph.
It was a momentous occasion last week when they finished ahead of Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana in the tournament in Barbados and then beat Mexico 22-3 in the regional final to go through to the next round.
They will compete in the next round of the World Cup qualifiers in April and will soon resume training.
In the meantime, the youngsters will enjoy a fitting reception in their honour at the rugby club in South Sound on Thursday.
Stephen Chin was one of the triumphant members of the side. He said: ‘It’s a great feeling of accomplishment to know that I’m a part of a team that has made history in the Cayman Islands.
‘It was amazing to arrive at the airport to see the newspapers and everyone there. I felt like a real champion.
‘My friends and family have all be great in supporting me ever since I came back. Everyone is so excited that finally Cayman is getting somewhere in sports.’
Chin is 17 tomorrow, so this is an extra special time in the tight head prop’s life. He loves his position although it is arguably one of the toughest ones to get used to.
Nevertheless, Chin is bristling to get back to action. ‘I’m the main part in the scrums and part of a deadly forward row that will knock away anyone in our way!’ So be warned opposition.
He is a student at St. Ignatius High School and in September will start his last year of sixth form. This kid is no slouch. In his summer and Christmas breaks he work at Walkers in the IT department.
His parents Albert and Sharaine have been tremendously supportive. ‘They are so proud of me and the team, they always have been. They are always talking about it to everyone and can’t wait for what the future holds for us.’
Are they sporty? Chin laughs. ‘Well I guess you could say ‘back in the day’ they were sporty but nowadays they watch my sister or I play our sports from the sidelines. They are our biggest fans.’
Although he has worked hard for his rugby success, Chin is appreciative of the help he’s received to get there.
‘I would like to add a special thank you to our excellent coach Richard ‘Grizz’ Adams for all his hard work and getting us to where we are now,’ he said. ‘Also, I would like to thank coaches Keswick Wright, Graeme Thomson and all of the other people who played a critical role in the team’s progress. Look out Cayman here we come!’