… Abrams, Phillips out at semis
By Rawle Toney in Birmingham (Team Guyana Press Attaché)
CHANTOBA Bright had a Season’s Best 12.97 metres, but it was never going to give the Kansas State University athlete a chance at a podium-finish on another shivering-cold night of Track and Field at the Alexander Stadium.
Jamaican Shanieka Ricketts, 2018 Commonwealth Games silver medallist, was first of the 13 jumpers to the pit and the 2022 World Championships runner-up placed the entire competition on notice with a leap of 14.94m.
Ricketts’ jump became the new Games record in the Women’s Triple Jump. With the night already cold, it added further chills to her competitors.
Dominica’s Lafond Thea, bronze medallist at the 2018 Gold Coast Games, was second (14.39m) and England’s Naomi Metzger settled for bronze with a Personal Best 14.37m.
Jamaica’s Kimberly Williams, the 2014 and 2018 Commonwealth Games champion, settled for fourth (14.25).
Meanwhile, Aliyah Abrams and Kenisha Phillips ended their campaign at the Commonwealth Games after exiting in the semi-finals of the Women’s 400m and 200m respectively.
Abrams crossed the finish line sixth, with a time of 52.82s. Her performance was certainly not the result she was hoping for.
“I think my body is at that point. It’s the only way I can describe it,” Abrams stated, pointing to her showing at the World Indoor Championships this year, where she was fifth in the finals, and followed that up with a semi-finals appearance in Oregon.
“I give it all that I had; I don’t know. It’s cold, but everybody has the same conditions, so I just had to make the most of it,” Abrams said following her run.
For Phillips, yesterday’s run of 24.39s in Heat Two of the 200m brought the curtain down on her season.
“I’m just grateful to God. I had a long season and I’m thankful that it’s finally over and I was healthy from January to now,” Phillips said, while adding that she’s not used to competing in cold conditions.
It all comes down to the Men’s 4x100m relay team of Noelex Holder, Emanuel Archibald, Arinze Chance and Akeem Stewart to salvage some pride for the Guyanese track team in England’s second largest city.
“We’re very comfortable in the 4x100m,” a confident Stewart said. “I mean, our team brought back a bronze medal after two bad legs at the South American games; I think we’re capable of running 38 seconds.”
Guyana’s last three medals at the Commonwealth Games came from Track and Field.
In 2002, in Manchester, Aliann Pompey won gold in the Women’s 400m and returned in 2010, in Delhi, to clinch silver.
At the 2018 Games in Australia, Troy Doris won the Men’s Long Jump.