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Bahamian player looking to go pro

Shedrick Forbes, a member of the senior men’s national volleyball team, is one step closer to playing on the professional level. After playing in the Cayman Airways Spikefest 2010 last week with fellow Bahamian Jammal Ferguson and several top players from around the Caribbean, Forbes said the dream is now becoming a reality.

The utility player, who can attack from any area on the court as well as play defense, said one of his agents, Rita Buck-Crokett, is trying to get him on any one of the teams in Switzerland or Sweden in 2011. Until that happens, Forbes said he will continue to play in tournaments around the region and in the United States.

“I am not giving up. Playing on the professional level is something that I want and I will work hard to achieve it,”said Forbes.”I have a couple of agents, Rita Buck-Crokett especially, who are working to try and get me into Switzerland or Sweden for the 2011 recruiting class, so, until then, I’m trying to gain more experience and exposure to have as much edge and advantage over the competition when I get there.”

If Forbes is successful, he will be the first Bahamian to play professional volleyball for The Bahamas. He will join Caribbean counterparts Danny Wilson, Lecia Brown, Marc Honore, Kelly-Anne Billingy, Shari Matthews, Krystle Esdelle and Niecey Wood. Wilson and Brown are members of the Jamaican national volleyball teams, Honore, Billingy and Esdelle are all members of the Trinidad and Tobago men and women’s national teams, and Matthews and Wood play on the national level for Barbados.

Wilson became the second professional volleyball player for Jamaica, turning pro in October of this year. He is currently playing in Israel and Brown plays in Poland with the PTPS Pila Volleyball Club.

According to Forbes, joining the professional volleyball ranks is not a hard task. He said: ”Well I have to complete a highlight video and send a full match of which I played in so they could see me in action. I also have to get in contact with our federation to see how much it is going to cost the potential team to sign me as a professional player, to that particular team and what are the fees, if any. A volleyball resume of prior experience, high school, college, national team, physical stats of height, weight, or awards has to be included as well.

“I have done the majority of the things, just working on one or two more. There are players here like Jammal and Byron who are also working toward accomplishing this goal. Jammal and I played in Cayman, and we got back today. Bryon and one or two others opted not to play, but overall that tournament was competitive and was used as another opportunity to improve ourselves. It was filled with talent coming from Jamaica, Trinidad, St. Lucia, the Cayman Islands, Canada and New York.

“Although there were only six men’s teams in the competition, any of the teams could lose on any given night. Our semifinal match was against the Venus All-stars from Jamaica, which is a team filled with upcoming Jamaican junior talent. Our team was pushed the extra mile in best two of three matches. The third set went to 15-11. As for the final, in my opinion, the two best teams at the tournament made it to the final, which was the Caribbean All-stars and the Kayotics, which was a mixed team made of players from Cayman, New York and Canada. This final was also a highly contested match where every point felt as if it was championship point. Both teams went the extra mile in the championship, but it was the Caribbean All-stars which took the gold, 15-13, so the experience was good as well.”

Forbes said the Caribbean All-star team will continue to play together at various tournaments for an opportunity to get discovered.

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