Friday, December 3, 2021


Vincentian middle-distance athlete Handal Roban has been granted an Athletics scholarship to attend Pennsylvania State University, USA.

The 19-year-old, a former student of the Pamelus Burke Primary School, the Georgetown Secondary and the St Vincent Grammar School, spent the last two years in Jamaica, attending the Jamaica College. 

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Indications are that Roban had as many as ten offers from USA Colleges/Universities, before settling for Penn State. 

As he reflects on his progress to date and what lies immediately ahead, Roban said that apart from his personal goals of “working harder and getting better,” he wants to make a way for other Vincentian athletes. 

And as he looks back on his achievements, the young man acknowledged that he could not have done it without the help of others.

 “I would like to thank my family and friends… Special thanks to Coach Rawlson Morgan and Suzanna Leigertwood-Ollivierre, my current Coach- Duane Johnson, as well as all my former teachers at the Georgetown Secondary School and my Jamaica College family, Team Athletics SVG and all who have been wishing me well over the years,” he expressed.

Roban is coming off a stellar year, reeling off St Vincent and the Grenadines’ records at will.

He became this country’s all-time record holder in that event when, at the World Athletics Under-20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya, he clocked 1:48.37 to eclipse Eversley Linley’s 1:48.60, achieved at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. 

Also, during 2021, Roban earned a gold in the 800m and silver in the 400m at the North American, Central American and Caribbean Under-18/Under-20 and Under-23 Championships in Costa Rica in July.

These add to his Junior Carifta Games gold and bronze medals and his bronze at the NACAC Under-18 bronze medal.

Regionally, Roban is the Male Under-20 record holder for the 800m at Grenada’s Whitsuntide Games. 

Locally, he holds the records for the Under-20 800m and 1500m, as well as the 400, 800 and 1500m of the Intermediate Division at the Inter-Secondary School Athletics Championships (ISSA).

Roban is part of the quartet that has the National Under-20 4 x 400m in their grasp.

Before leaving for Jamaica, Roban competed for the X-Cel Track Club, headed by Rawlson Morgan. 

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