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  Clayton Nash and Robert Maxwell Compete in Barbados

Clayton Nash, 20, and Robert Maxwell, 16, have both earned spots to play for the 2004 Youth World Championship in Bridgetown, Barbados, held during the second week in June. Nash won the youth qualifier tournament in Honea Path, South Carolina, while Maxwell finished second in the event.

Both players are confident heading into the tournament. "I feel very confident that I can bring home the Youth World Title," said Nash. "I may not know what I am up against, but I do know that I have worked very hard to earn the rank of 'master level.' All I can do is bring my best and hope that is enough."

"The United States is by the far the strongest checker country in the world. I am convinced that Clay and I will come home bringing back titles of first and second place," said Maxwell.

Nash will also be competing in the First International tournament, United States vs. Barbados, as well as the Barbados Open. Maxwell will only be competing in the Youth Tournament. "I'm mainly preparing and training to face off against the other Barbados masters. That is main focus," said Nash.

Master player Michael Holmes has also noticed the talent in Nash. "I've played [Nash] a few times in tournament play, and I believe he is already a strong master." said Holmes.

Nash and Maxwell, although fierce competitors when facing off against each other, hold each other in high regard now that they are playing together on Team USA. "I think Robert will do fairly well in the tournament," said Nash. Maxwell had similar words towards Nash. "If I don't win, I certainly would like my teammate Clay to dominate the tournament," said Maxwell.

Both players are more than willing to supply their games to anyone who makes a donation to their travel fund. If you would like to donate to these players, please go to ACF Donations and choose Travel Fund Donation.

This story was kindly submitted by ACF Website Journalist . More about Mr. Pronk is available in his biography.

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