24 Mar 2019

Success against Congo Brazzaville’s Suraju Saku, followed by a six games defeat at the hands Egypt’s Omar Assar was a most creditable performance by Brian Afanador at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games; he was only 19 years old at the time.

Now the quest to compete next year in Tokyo begins, one option is via the Pan America Games to be staged later this year in Lima, succeed in that event and you are bound for the Land of the Rising Sun but first you must qualify.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Brian Afanador leads Puerto Rico in the men’s team event at the Lima Pan American Games Caribbean Qualification Tournament. Staged in Georgetown, Guyana play commences on Sunday 24th March and concludes on Monday 25th March; the tournament precedes the six day Caribbean Championships.

He lines up alongside Daniel Gonzalez and Ricardo Jimenez; they are the top seeds but face intense competition from the Dominican Republic. In addition to Emil Santos, Samuel Galvez and Mariano Lockward, they include Wu Jiaji in their line-up, a young man who several years ago was a prominent member of the Chinese national junior team.

Also, in the women’s team event, the Dominican Republic is most prevalent; led by Eva Brito, supported by Yasiris Ortiz and Esmerlyn Castro, they are the top seeds.

Only the outfit finishing in first place in each of the men’s team and women’s team events will join the teams who qualified last November at the 2018 Pan American Championships in Santiago, Chile. In the men’s event Brazil, the United States, Paraguay, Chile, Argentina and Cuba passed the test; for the women it was Brazil, the United States, Canada, Cuba, Puerto Rico and Argentina.

Similarly, as in Guyana, qualification tournaments are scheduled for the regions of Central America, South America and North America; likewise only the winning teams progress. Should for any reason one of the qualification tournaments not be held, the place will be awarded to the leading team in the region not already qualified, provided the team is among the first 20 Pan American listed teams on the world ranking.

Thus in each of the men’s and women’s events, six teams qualified in Santiago last November plus the four from each of the regions, the total is 10 in number; then add the highest listed team on the world rankings for May 2019 that has not already qualified plus Peru as the host; thus there are 12 teams in total destined for Santiago. In addition in each of the men’s singles and women’s singles events there are six further places; therefore a total of 42 players in the men’s singles, the same in the women’s singles event.

Overall at the Pan American Games, the maximum quota per National Olympic Committee is three men and three women but limited to two players in each of the men’s singles and women’s singles events, one pair in each of the men’s doubles, women’s doubles and mixed doubles competitions.

In Guyana one men’s and one women’s team will qualify; intense competition awaits.


Lima Pan American Games Caribbean Qualification Tournament: Schedule – Sunday 24th March & Monday 25th March


Lima Pan American Games Caribbean Qualification Tournament: Seeding – Men’s Team & Women’s Team (Sunday 24th March)


Lima Pan American Games Caribbean Qualification Tournament: Men’s Team – Stage One (Sunday 24th March)

Lima Pan American Games Caribbean Qualification Tournament: Women’s Team – Final Stage (Sunday 24th March)

Pan American Games – Qualification

Pan American Games: Prospect – English

Pan American Games: Qualified Teams – Pan American Championships

2019 Pan American Games Brian Afanador

Photo Gallery

Day 5 - 2019 Pan American Games