Jan 04, 2021 Sports
Kaieteur News – Sport was dormant for nine months (March 2020 – November 2020) due to the regulations that were put in place for fighting the deadly COVID-19 pandemic and although many nations came out of lockdown early and returned to training and/ competition much earlier, Guyanese athletes weren’t afforded that luxury.
The year started positive with the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) being able to host a total of three development meets by January 15th.
Over 150 athletes took to the Enmore Community Center (ECC) ground on the East Coast of Demerara (ECD) on January 15th for the third AAG development meet which sped off in glorious sunshine.
At the ECC, which is situated opposite the Enmore Martyr’s monument, Sprinter Davin Fraser of the Police Progressive Youth Club (PPYC) and National Javelin record holder, Leslain Baird of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) club turned in notable performances.
In the men’s open 60m dash, Fraser clocked a blazing 6.90s in a big win over the field. His club mate Stephon Boodie was second in 7.04s, while Yannick Williams of GDF was third in 7.11s.
In the open men’s Javelin event, Baird, who missed the business end of the 2019 season after suffering from internal hemorrhoids, continued his positive rehabilitation with an impressive performance. Baird registered a distance of 64.90m, spearing into the heavy Atlantic Ocean breeze while using a short run-up.
Following the third development meet, the young stars showed that they were hungry and eager to represent the Golden Arrowhead at the Caribbean Free Trade Association (CARIFTA) games that was scheduled to be held in Bermuda with 12 athletes qualifying for the cancelled Easter weekend games as early as February.
Those athletes include 2019 Javelin bronze medalist Anisha Gibbons, Loneil Marks, Attoya Harvey, Seon Booker and Okenoko Pascal. Pascal qualified for the boys’ under-17 shot put, while Booker and Harvey would’ve represented Guyana in the 1500m male and female races, respectively. Marks made the Carifta standard (CS) in the boys’ under-20 100m.
The other seven athletes who had qualified were Wesley Tyndall, Randy Hamilton, Adriel Austin, Keliza Smith, Annalisa Barclay, Princess Browne and Trevon Hamer.
Still on the topic of Carifta games, the ‘land of many waters’ was confirmed as the hosts of the auspicious 50th edition of the tournament which has now been pushed back to 2022.
The last meet before the lockdown, the Early Season Classic, got underway despite the threat of the pandemic and it was a successful meet at the National Track & Field Center (NTFC) at Edinburg.
While there was a sprinkling of spectators, most of the athletes turned up to match strides during the two-day fixture which attracted several overseas based athletes.
Usual suspects Davin Fraser (100m) and Akeem Stewart (200m) ran away with top honours in the main event, while national javelin record holder, Leslain Baird, Emmanuel Archibald, Joshua Tappin and Isaiah Lewis made light work of their opponents in the field events.
Fraser, of the Police Progressive Youth Club, clocked 10.26s to take the tag of the meet’s fastest man, leading Archibald (10.32s) and Stewart (10.42s) onto the podium in the men’s 100m final.
On November 1, authorities approved the return of sports and the AAG wasted little time with the hosting of two highly successful cross-country events, along with the participation of Team Guyana in an Ekiden virtual world relay race.
The last event for the year was an all local South America 10k race which Winston Missigher won comfortably on December 13 to pocket $150,000, while on the distaff side Sheama Tyrell walked away with the top prize of $150,000.
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