Infotainment Factory: Schoolboy rugby star wins Australian 100m title

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Saturday, 6 April 2019

Schoolboy rugby star wins Australian 100m title


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Powerhouse New Zealand teenager Eddie Nketia has taken down the best of Australian sprinting's generation next to win the men's 100m title at the national track and field championships.

Nketia, 17, who spent eight years in Canberra before moving back to Wellington in 2018 to complete his schooling, won on Saturday night in 10.22 seconds at Sydney Olympic Park .

Nketia, coached by his father and NZ 100m record holder Gus Nketia, also shows great promise as a schoolboy rugby player.

But after smashing his 100m personal best with 10.19 seconds in the semis on Saturday and backing up with a commanding victory in the final, his prospects on the track have skyrocketed.

"It feels so good," he said.

"I know I got pumped up for my semi but my dad just took me to the warm-up track and tried to calm me down.

"My dad thought I was capable of this but I think he was just bluffing."

Sydneysider Rohan Browning - who moved to equal third last month on the Australian 100m all-time list - was second in 10.28 and Tasmanian Jack Hale was third in 10.34.

Queenslander Naa Anang is halfway to becoming the first Australian woman to do the 100m-long jump double at the national titles after winning the blue-riband sprint in 11.32.

"I'm not a sprinter - I'm a long jumper who runs," she said.

"It's part of my training.

"It was going really well in training and I just wanted to see whether it translated to a 100 race because it's a bit further than I run in the long jump.

"It's more of a fun event for me because there's not as much pressure on me to do well."

Anang has already bettered the world championships qualifying mark for the long jump and will back up in her pet event on Sunday against 2016 Olympic finalist Brooke Stratton.

Teenager Bendere Oboya put aside the controversy surrounding her coach Greg Smith to win the women's 400m in 52.00.

Smith had his laptop and mobile phone confiscated during a raid last year by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority and has had his coaching accreditation stripped by Athletics Australia.

Oboya refused to comment on Smith's ban.

London Olympics finalist Steve Solomon secured a sixth national men's one-lap title in 45.99, while Peter Bol won his first Australian crown after crossing the line first in the men's 800m in 1:46.12.

Matt Denny left it until the last possible moment before bettering the automatic qualifying mark of 65m in the discus for October's world championships.

The Queenslander - who has shelved the hammer throw to focus solely on the discus for the next couple of years - secured the victory with 65.28m in the final round.

High jumper Joel Baden (2.30m) and javelin throwers Kelsey-Lee Barber (63.33m) and Kathryn Mitchell (62.78m) also booked their spots on the Australian team for the world titles in Doha.

Powerhouse New Zealand teenager Eddie Nketia has taken down the best of Australian sprinting's generation next to win the men's 100m title at the national track and field championships.

Nketia, 17, who spent eight years in Canberra before moving back to Wellington in 2018 to complete his schooling, won on Saturday night in 10.22 seconds at Sydney Olympic Park .

Nketia, coached by his father and NZ 100m record holder Gus Nketia, also shows great promise as a schoolboy rugby player.

But after smashing his 100m personal best with 10.19 seconds in the semis on Saturday and backing up with a commanding victory in the final, his prospects on the track have skyrocketed.

"It feels so good," he said.

"I know I got pumped up for my semi but my dad just took me to the warm-up track and tried to calm me down.

"My dad thought I was capable of this but I think he was just bluffing."

Sydneysider Rohan Browning - who moved to equal third last month on the Australian 100m all-time list - was second in 10.28 and Tasmanian Jack Hale was third in 10.34.

Queenslander Naa Anang is halfway to becoming the first Australian woman to do the 100m-long jump double at the national titles after winning the blue-riband sprint in 11.32.

"I'm not a sprinter - I'm a long jumper who runs," she said.

"It's part of my training.

"It was going really well in training and I just wanted to see whether it translated to a 100 race because it's a bit further than I run in the long jump.

"It's more of a fun event for me because there's not as much pressure on me to do well."

Anang has already bettered the world championships qualifying mark for the long jump and will back up in her pet event on Sunday against 2016 Olympic finalist Brooke Stratton.

Teenager Bendere Oboya put aside the controversy surrounding her coach Greg Smith to win the women's 400m in 52.00.

Smith had his laptop and mobile phone confiscated during a raid last year by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority and has had his coaching accreditation stripped by Athletics Australia.

Oboya refused to comment on Smith's ban.

London Olympics finalist Steve Solomon secured a sixth national men's one-lap title in 45.99, while Peter Bol won his first Australian crown after crossing the line first in the men's 800m in 1:46.12.

Matt Denny left it until the last possible moment before bettering the automatic qualifying mark of 65m in the discus for October's world championships.

The Queenslander - who has shelved the hammer throw to focus solely on the discus for the next couple of years - secured the victory with 65.28m in the final round.

High jumper Joel Baden (2.30m) and javelin throwers Kelsey-Lee Barber (63.33m) and Kathryn Mitchell (62.78m) also booked their spots on the Australian team for the world titles in Doha.

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