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World T/F team includes some medal possibilities

  • Anthonique Strachan.

FRED STURRUP
SPORTS SCOPE

Published: Jul 20, 2013

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The Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) is close to making its final selection for the 14th International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships, scheduled for Moscow, Russia, August 10-18.

According to a Nassau Guardian article, all that remains perhaps, is for the men sprinters who recently pushed the national relay record down to 38.77, to all be added to the team. Trevorvano Mackey and Jamial Rolle have been named already. It is expected that Shavez Hart and Adrian Griffith will be selected.

The squad is one of an interesting mix. There are the new talents, the rising elite performers, and veterans inclusive of the one remaining original Golden Girl – Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie.

What are we to be realistically hopeful of?

The view here is that The Bahamas will produce some finalists for sure and at least one medal. There will be a lot of attention given to speedy Anthonique Strachan and Shaunae Miller who have emerged as the marquee female track and field athletes in the country.

It would be a huge disappointment if Strachan does not line up with the rest of the finalists of the 200 meters and Miller misses out on the final of the 400 meters. They are both long shots at best for individual medals, but if they are able to get to the finals and go under their personal best (22.32 in the 200m for Strachan and 50.70 in the 400m for Miller), they could end up on the podium.

If Miller runs the 200 and the 400, I don’t know how much she will have left for women’s sprint relay. It will still be exciting though to see Sheniqua Ferguson, Strachan and Miller with whomever else in the relay final.

Special “kudos” to Cache Armbrister! She is running better than ever before and should prove to be a big contributor to the sprint relay team in the early rounds. She could end up with a leg in the final. Sheniqua Ferguson and Bianca Stuart are possible finalists in the 100 meters and long jump respectively.

What’s in store for Derrick Atkins?

It’s good to see him approaching peak form, demonstrated back in 2007, when he was a World Championships silver medalist. The national 100 meters record holder at 9.91, has also gone 9.86 and 9.83 wind-aided. His 2013 personal best is 10.06. He is a possible finalist.

Three of the Golden Knights – Chris Brown, Ramon Miller and Michael Mathieu – could end up on the line for the 400 meters final. LaToy Williams could find himself there as well. Along with Williams, the Knights figure to be the strongest medal opportunity for The Bahamas. They will be without Demetrius Pinder, who pulled a hamstring during the Chris Brown Bahamas Invitational, here in April.

Still, The Bahamas figures to be one of the two best 1600m relay teams in the championships, right up there with the United States. The USA will be looking to make a statement. There is no doubt still a lot of groaning in that country at the thought of Ramon Miller running past Angelo Taylor in the homestretch to clinch the gold medal for The Bahamas at the 2012 London Olympics.

Atkins was not on the team that set the new national sprint relay record. He is easily the fastest Bahamian sprinter. If the others run consistently in Moscow, at their national record pace, and Atkins continues his drive back to world elite prominence, a men’s sprint relay final is a good possibility for The Bahamas.

Best wishes to the team and the officials!

Go Bahamas!


• To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at sturrup1504@gmail.com.



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