T&T's highest ranking gymnast, Thema Williams, will make history as the only female gymnast to represent the country in a world championship next week. Williams left T&T last night for New York and is expected to arrive in Tokyo, Japan, this afternoon to participate in the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships which begins next Friday. At a press conference on Wednesday, held at ToTs and Tumblers Gymnastics Club, Williams put on her final routine performance, giving her club-mates, family, sponsors and well-wishers an idea of some of the moves which she will be performing in Japan. Tots & Tumblers coach Clifton Mc Dowell was present along with coach Deborah Garcia, who will both be accompanying Williams. Director of Sport at the Ministry of Sport, Dave Bobb was also on hand to offer support for Williams. "We have here, a gymnast who will make us proud. T&T will be seen through the eyes of gymnastics."
Describing Williams' travels as a "wonderful occasion", Bobb added that the Ministry will continue to support Williams in her upcoming ventures. The Ministry has assisted Williams since 2008. American Airlines has also donated two return tickets from New York to Japan. In Japan, Williams will have to complete four routines: the vault, bars, beam and floor, in order to have a realistic chance of placing. Her results will determine whether she becomes the first female gymnast from T&T to qualify for a Summer Olympic Games, the next of which will be held in London, England, next year. Williams, who was previously nominated for Sportswoman of the year, has many personal credits to her name, including an AA Gold in a Friendship Classic in Pennsylvania, USA, in 2008.
More recently, Williams participated in the Senior Pan American Gymnastics Championships in Mexico last year, where she placed 34th in All Around Competitive out of 76 gymnasts. She took first place in "Single Athlete Countries". Williams has trained with Tots & Tumblers since 2000, a year after they were established. The gym now trains over 90 competitive athletes. She has trained with her current coaches, Mc Dowell and Garcia since she was six years old. Mc Dowell has accompanied Williams in her travels across the western hemisphere to nations including Peru, Mexico, Jamaica and the USA, all of which she has competed in tournaments.