Trinidadian cyclists eyeing podium finishes at CWG

IANS| Last Updated: Jul 18, 2014, 13:28 PM IST

Glasgow: Trinidadian cyclists Njisane Phillip and Quincy Alexander are hoping that despite hiccups in their preparation for the Commonwealth Games they can reach the medal podium when the showpiece opens here Wednesday.

The 23-year-old Phillip is down to do battle in the keirin while Alexander, 21, will compete in the kilometre time trial, at the Games which run until Aug 3, reports CMC.

Phillip told the Trinidad Guardian that he had been hampered by poor facilities at his base in Pennsylvania in the United States and had been forced to head to California to resume his preparation.

“It’s been a little stressful mentally. It’s something I had to adjust to and get ready. Right now I’m definitely in a better state of mind,” said Philip.

“I’m just feeling excited to race, however, it turns out. But I’m definitely going to do my best-put my strong foot forward and do my best for T&T.”

Phillip has experienced a successful last four years and a medal at the Commonwealth Games would be a further boon to his career. He won gold in the individual sprint at the Central American Games in Puerto Rico four years ago and also won silver in the team pursuit.

He followed up with bronze at the Pan American Games in Mexico the following year before winning silver at the UCI World Cup last November in Manchester, England.

Phillip said despite an injury scare earlier this year, he was confident of continuing his success.

“This is like the first major race of the season for me. Summer time races didn’t go as planned because of my preparations for the Commonwealth Games, but now things are starting to shape up,” said Phillip.

“I have a positive mindset because the Games are big, other than the Olympics and we are definitely trying to bring back home some hardware. It’s been a long time since cycling has been able to get a medal in Commonwealth Games. So we are definitely trying to get on top that podium.”

Alexander, meanwhile, will also be hoping to build on his rising reputation and is backing his preparation to bring him success.

“We would be coming up against guys from Australia, New Zealand, England, Wales and Scotland,” said Alexander who won gold at the Pan American Cycling Championship.

“The Games are important and are of a high calibre. Both Njisane and I have prepared properly. Although we have different camps we both have really good coaches.”