Junior Trials move into high gear today

...But will be lacking in stardust

Friday, June 22, 2018

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After a slow start yesterday, the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association (JAAA) National Junior Championships will swing into action today with a full day of action with 24 finals down to be contested.

Only one event was held yesterday, the first round of the boys' Under-20 100m, with the semi-finals and final set for later today starting just before 8:30 pm.

The other three 100m finals — the Under-20 boys and both Under-18 sections — will also be held this evening.

The juniors will be seeking places on the teams to the IAAF World Under-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland, next month and the World Youth Games (Under-18) to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in September.

The Junior section of the championships, which is twinned with the Senior Championships, has been somewhat diluted with the absence of two of its brightest stars in female sprinters Kevona Davis due to injury and Briana Williams, who will run against the senior women.

Earlier, Christopher Taylor had opted to contest the senior men's 400m as well.

Davis, the bronze medallist at last year's IAAF World Under-18 championships in Nairobi, Kenya, was ruled out after she reportedly suffered a leg injury in training this week.

Three finals will be held this morning, which are the Under-18 boys long jump and both girls' javelin events.

The other three long jump finals, all four discus throws, both boys' javelin finals, both girls triple jumps, the Under-20 boys' pole vaults and all four 1500m runs will be decided today.

The first round of the 800m and the 400m hurdles are set for this morning with the semi-finals of the 400m set for later in the afternoon.

With Taylor opting to go up against the “big boys”, Kingston College's Dashawn Morris, the 'Champs' winner, and the overseas based Chantz Sawyers, the number one and three ranked Under-20 boys' quarter-milers in the world, respectively, look set for a battle royale in tomorrow's final, assuming they make it out of the semi-finals today.

Anthony Carpenter, a member of the silver medal winning team two years ago in Poland, also had the fifth best time in the world coming into the championships, while his high school teammate Shemar Chambers will also want to make his mark.

In the girls' Under-20 400m, Stacey-Ann Williams of St Elizabeth Technical and St Andrew High's Janielle Josephs could be the ones to watch.

If form holds, Calabar's Tyreke Wilson will start the Under-20 boys 100m as the favourite, but he will face competition from former Munro College runner Andre Edwards, who runs for South Plains Junior College in Texas; Kingston College's Jhevaughn Matherson, a semi-finalist in the 100m in Poland; and Calabar's Michael Stephens.

With both Williams and Davis out of the Under-20 girls 100m, Holmwood Technical's Michae Harriot and Petersfield High's Okera Myrie lead the small field of athletes.

St Jago's Roje Stona — who was ranked in the top three in the world earlier, but has slipped to sixth — and Calabar's Kai Chang, who is at number eight, are expected to dominate the Under-20 boys' discus throw.

— Paul Reid

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