MINISTER of Sport Shamfa Cudjoe paid a posthumous tribute to former TT tennis coach Dave Patrick and umpire Colleen De Gannes on their recent passing.
In a press release issued by the Ministry of Sport, Cudjoe said, “My thoughts and prayers are with the tennis fraternity during this time. In less than two weeks, we have lost two torchbearers who made invaluable contributions to the sport of tennis.”
The sport minister saluted the pair’s multiple developments functions through tennis over the years and highlighted their work within both the local and regional fraternity.
“Dave Patrick’s passion and commitment to tennis, encouraged hundreds of young people to play and excel in the sport of tennis. Colleen De Gannes ensured that when these athletes competed, they observed the principles of fair play and sportsmanship. Their contributions both on and off the field will certainly be missed,” Cudjoe added.
Patrick was a national coach who contributed immensely to the development of local tennis. He passed away on July 2. Patrick started tennis coaching in the 1980s in south Trinidad and later conducted his sessions along the East-West corridor. Although, he coached adults, Patrick concentrated on nurturing junior tennis players. Several of his students were successful both nationally and regionally.
De Gannes, one of the most experienced umpires in the Caribbean, passed away on July 12. She was an umpire for over 30 years and became the main tennis official within the English-speaking Caribbean Confederation. She was a well-respected tournament official and served as the supervisor for COTECC (Central America and the Caribbean Confederation of Tennis).