More medals won on final day at Commonwealth Youth Games
The England team added four medals to their haul on the last day of athletics in Samoa.
Toby Harries (Club: Brighton Phoenix, Coach: Jon Bigg) won a silver in the 200m and was within a whisker of gold. The title was taken by 100m champion Tiotliso Leotlela who earlier this year was fifth over 200m at the World Youth Championships where Toby had been sixth and 0.06 seconds behind. This time Toby was close enough to be given the same time – 20.56 (2.6) with the South African just ahead on the line. Nick Stewart (Club: Enfield & Haringey, Coach: Ryan Freckleton) clocked 21.35 for fifth place.
In the women’s shot Sophie Merritt (Club: Southampton, Coach: David Callaway) claimed another medal – adding a silver to the bronze she won in the discus. Sophie’s best mark was 15.78 as Grace Robinson of Australia took gold with a personal best of 16.39 and India’s Anamika Das won bronze with 15.03. Divine Oladipo (Club: Blackheath & Bromley, Coach: John Hillier) was ninth with 12.71 in her second event of the Games.
High jump champion Niamh Emerson (Club: Amber Valley, Coach: David Feeney/ Jayne Nisbet) secured her second medal of the Games with a 61.99 run in the 400m hurdles to take bronze and add to her gold at high jump. The title was taken by Jamaica’s Junelle Bromfield who added to her 400m flat title in 60.78.
There was a distance running medal in the men’s 3000m where the two English athletes went up against the strong Kenyan duo of Davis Kiplangat and Richard Kimunyan who both ran 7:53 at altitude earlier this year. Alex Yee (Club: Kent AC, Coach: Ken Pike) impressed with third place behind them in 8:18.12 (7:59.56 and 7:59.78 for the Kenyans respectively). Will Richardson (Club: Birchfield H, Coach: Peter Stewart) took fourth in 8:26.28.
There was more Kenyan dominance in the 800m but George Mills (Club: Harrogate, Coach: Joanne Day) was not far from the medals. World Youth Champion and 1.44.51A man Willy Tarbei won from fellow countryman (and 1.44 runner) Bett Kipyegon with 1:46.05 to 1:46.15. In the fight for the bronze medal George was 0.47 off in 1:50.89 as Ben Greenwood of Scotland and Leon Clarke of Jamaica took third and fourth. James Gormley (Club: Sheffield, Coach: John Wood) was seventh in 1:53.14.
Daniel Cartwright (Club: Birchfield Harriers, Coach: Jan Aarre) produced a personal best to take fourth in the men’s shot. His mark of 18.59 was bettered by the South Africa duo of Werner Jakobus Visser and Burger Lambrechts who took silver and bronze with 19.78 and 19.31 respectively and Jamaican winner Kevin Nedrick’s 20.12.
Hope Sarti (Club: Guildford & Godalming) was fourth in the final of the 100m hurdles with 13.57 (1.6). The title was won by Taylon Bieldt of South Africa (13.18) ahead of the Australian duo of Kirra Womersley and Rachel Pace (13.39 and 13.46). Alicia Barrett (Club: Chesterfield - Coach: Daniel Duke) did not finish after hitting the first hurdle threw her off balance and she was unable to get back into her rhythm.
Ella Barrett (Club: Chesterfield, Coach: Daniel Duke) was fifth in the 200m with 24.07 (2.6), as the first four all ran under 24 seconds – Scotland’s Alisha Rees splitting the Nigerian duo of Idamadudu Praise Oghenef and Etim Aniekeme Alphonsus to take silver.
With Toby Harries withdrawn from the men’s 4 x 100m due to a sight hamstring issue 1500m runner Archie Davis (Club: Brighton Phoenix - Coach: Joe Kidger) stepped in and the quartet of Rechmial Miller (Club: Hercules Wimbledon - Coach: Ryan Freckleton), Oliver Bromby (Club: Southampton - Coach: Sara MacDonald-Gray), Nick Stewart and Archie took fourth in 43.17. The women’s team did not finish.
Team leader Scott Grace said, "When the team set off on the 31st of August, the main goal was to get as many fourth place positions as possible, as reflected in the selection policy, while at the same time giving these young athletes valuable experience for their senior careers ahead.
"This would be no mean feat due to the challenge of travelling to the other side of the world, dealing with hot and humid conditions and competing against some of the strongest commonwealth teams. In fact most of the prominent sporting countries sent their 'A' teams to take on the rest of the Commonwealth and we have seen a number of nations continue their rise to increased sporting prominence at these Games.
"What followed was three fantastic days of athletics where the England team united as one, which produced some amazing results including; 2 Gold medals, 5 Silver medals, 3 Bronze medals,
and a further 9, 4th place finishers."