Foster cops 8x100m Mixed Multi Nat. gold; Yaw sprints to 200m bronze
By Franklin Wilson in Peru
Guyana closed out participation at the inaugural South American Youth Games (1SAYG) in Peru in classical fashion with Andrea Foster capturing this nations first and only gold medal in the Mixed (4 Male & 4 Female) Multi National 8x100m Relay.
Prior to that race, Jason Yaw captured his second bronze of the Games in the 200m (22.14s) final which was won by Panama’s Arturo Deliser (21.62) who also captured the 100m gold. Venezuela’s Josneyber Ramirez took silver in 21.93.
Weightlifter, Sheriah Melville, the other athlete in action yesterday competed in the +63 category but did not do as was expected ending with a total of 113kgs, she Snatched 53 and Clean & Jerked 60. Melville failed her first lift in the Snatch (47kg), while she also failed her final two in the Clean & Jerk (65kg). Winning this category was Columbia’s Yeinny Geles with a total of 203kgs.
On Saturday evening, the lone male weightlifter, Darren Williams achieved Personal Best lifts in a performance that drew compliments from Coach, Sean Cozier.
But much focus was on the track athletes on yesterday’s final day, especially Yaw. The lanky sprinter did not disappoint his Coach Julian Edmonds nor his countrymen and women who were rooting for him.
It was always going to be a tough race for Yaw, who fought off an upset stomach on Saturday after the 400m bronze to take on the field and qualify for the 200m final in that semi a short while after.
From the gun, the feeling was that Yaw, who had promised the day before to end with a bang, was on target. He paced himself admirably during the race, dipping to the line at the end to secure the bronze medal much to the delight of Coach Edmonds who could have been heard in the stands urging his athlete on.
After the race, Yaw said that he was very pleased with his performance despite not being 100% and taking on conditions that himself and fellow athletes are not used to. He noted that the competition was very good and the experience gained is fantastic for him in the future.
The 16-year-old, Deliser, it was ascertained, trained with world sprint champion Jamaican Usain Bolt and is expected to return to that Caribbean Island next month for another stint. Even at 16, Deliser looks an accomplished athlete; given a similar opportunity (s), Yaw too, can become one of the best in the Caribbean, South America and further afield.
Three days of exciting action on the track culminated with the 8x100m Mixed Multi National Male and Female Relay. The Guyanese trio was placed on different teams but it was 1500m and 3000m athlete, Andrea Foster who was going to come out with the gold medal.
The race was done with the males starting at the usual 100m starting line while the females faced them at the finish line. The athletes had to touch hands before continuing what turned out to be an exciting duel. Foster’s team was triumphant in the end and she noted that even though the language barrier was a challenge in understanding each other, victory was common among her team mates and of course, “sweet”.
Darren Williams pleased his Coach Saean Cozier with his performance on Saturday evening. The 15-year-old Williams, like fellow weightlifters Denoila Bristol and Sheriah Melville, had just about six weeks to learn the fine arts of the sport which has been in the doldrums for sometime in Guyana.
And like Bristol, Williams achieved Personal Best lifts in his first competition at any level. Contesting the 69kg category which attracted six other seasoned competitors, Williams who ended 7th, had a best Snatch of 50kg, while in the Clean and Jerk he accomplished 60kg.
He attempted 63kg on his final attempt but failed. Coach Cozier did not hold back his joy with Williams’ performance noting that he had to work overtime for the lad to reach this juncture.
“I had to work hard with Williams who has come a far way in six short weeks. He has really shown great improvement with the required techniques. This lad will get stronger and do very well. I applaud him, Bristol and Melville who are the new faces of the sport which is on the rebound.”
Team Guyana is expected home today.
Final Medal count
Gold Silver Bronze
1 1 7
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