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NZ's Golden Glow - Commonwealth Games day 1 wrap-up

NZ's Golden Glow

Published Friday 25 July 2014

Day 1 wrap-up

New Zealand won a gold meal and two bronzes on the first day of the Commonwealth Games. There was joy and heartbreak in an incredibly full day of sport. Here's how the New Zealanders fared:

CYCLING

Gold, bronze and a fourth placing were the offerings from the New Zealand track cycling team.

The gold went to the sprint team of Ethan Mitchell, Sam Webster and Eddie Dawkins. The trio, already world champions, blitzed England in the final and set a Games record of 43.181 (average speed 62.527kmh).

“We came here to win gold and to walk away with that is just...unreal,” Mitchell said shortly after the race.

The sprinters had earlier shown their class in the individual event. Dawkins, Webster and Matthew Archibald turned in a succession of fine rides to all qualify for tomorrow’s quarter-finals. Dawkins and Webster both briefly held the Games record on a day of sizzling times, and Dawkins beat Olympic champion Jason Kenny.

The New Zealand men’s team pursuit squad, which was desperately keen to earn a ride for gold, had to settle for the bronze medal after dipping out earlier to Australia and England. Dylan Kennett, Piet Bulling, Marc Ryan and Shane Archbold overwhelmed Canada in the bronze medal race and had caught the Canadians by the 2000m mark, ending the race.

Women’s 500m sprinter Stephanie McKenzie finished fourth. The Cambridge-based 21-year-old recorded 34.444s. The event was won by Australian Anna Meares in 33.425s.

SWIMMING

Lauren Boyle was the focus of much New Zealand attention at the pool.

Boyle, a triple world championship medallist last year, set a New Zealand record of 1min 56.82s in her 200m freestyle heat to be the third fastest qualifier. For a swimmer who had not previously gone under 1min 57s, it was a superb effort and augured well for her more favoured longer distance events.

In the final in the evening, Boyle was fractionally slower, clocking 1min 57.00s, and finished fourth. “I'm pretty happy. I wasn't ranked anywhere near a medal coming in, so coming fourth is good,” she said afterwards.

Another big name in the New Zealand swim team, Glenn Snyders, just missed a place in the final of the men’s 200m breaststroke. Snyders swam 2min 11.96s and was ninth overall.

Several other New Zealand swimmers progressed past their heats.

In the women’s 100m butterfly, Wellingtonian Samantha Lee reached the semi-finals when she swam 1min 00.29s, which placed her 12th. In her evening swim, Lee was timed at 1min 00.27s and finished 12th overall.

Corey Main turned in an impressive effort in the men’s 100m backstroke qualifying. His time of 54.40s placed him fourth among the 16 qualifiers. He continued the good work in the semi-finals, where his time of 54.28s booked him a place in the final in fifth place.

And in the women’s 4 x 100m freestyle relay, New Zealand qualified comfortably for the final, being the fourth fastest qualifier, behind Australia, England and Canada. In the final the New Zealanders Samantha Lucie-Smith, Laura Quilter, Samantha Lee and Ellen Quirke were timed at 3min 43.83s – fourth again. The race was won by Australia in a world record 3min 30.98s.

TRIATHLON

Andrea Hewitt was the outstanding New Zealand triathlete of the day.

Hewitt turned in a typically gutsy effort to finish fourth in the women’s race. Fellow New Zealanders Nicky Samuels and Kate McIlroy were 10th and 12th.

It was a demanding day for the triathletes. Strathclyde Country Park in Motherwell offered a hilly, testing course and it was surprisingly hot as well – Glasgow’s hottest day of the year.

On the run, Hewitt flagged, and was passed by Englishwoman Jodie Stimpson and Canadian Kirsten Sweetland. She drifted off the pace and trailed by 30 metres at one point, but tenaciously fought back to regain touch.

With about 3km remaining, the leaders cleared out and Hewitt could not respond.

Eventually Stimpson won in 1h 58.56s from Sweetland, 1h 59min 01s, and Holland 1h 59.11s. Hewitt was timed at 1h 59min 25s.

The men’s triathlon was dominated by England’s Brownlee brothers, Alistair and Jonny, who were in a class of their own. Alistair won in 1h 48min 50s, 11 seconds of his brother and 90 seconds ahead of the third place-getter.

The best of the New Zealanders was Tony Dodds, whose 1h 51min 58s earned him 10th. The other New Zealanders were Ryan Sissons, 13th half a minute back, and Tom Davison, who did not complete the run.

JUDO

There was bright news for the New Zealand judo team late on the opening day.

Darcina Manuel, formerly of Gisborne and now living in Perth, came through to win a bronze medal in the under-57kg. It is the seventh medal New Zealand has won in Commonwealth Games judo.

Manuel lost her first bout in the under-57kg division to Scotland’s Stephanie Inglis, an accomplished judoka who received vociferous home support.

In her repecharge bout, Manuel, 21, came back strongly to edge out Sarah Sylva of Mauritius and qualify for a shot at the bronze medal.

When Manuel met Canadian Jessica Klimkait in the bronze medal bout, she imposed herself early on and after 2min 20s scored an ippon to seal the contest, and the bronze medal.

New Zealand’s other competitor on the opening day, under-48kg judoka Chanel Kavanagh, made a quick exit.

In her first outing, Kavanagh, 19, went down to Onoh-Obasi Okey of Barbados in a four-minute bout.

In her repecharge, Kavanagh was well beaten by Marcelle Monabang of Cameroon. During the 4min 03s bout, Monabang recorded an ippon, a waza-ari and a yuko on her way to an emphatic victory.

BOWLS

The New Zealand bowlers were smiling after their first day at the Commonwealth Games.

The men’s triple of skip Ali Forsyth, Tony Grantham and Shannon McIlroy won a tight first match against Guernsey 16-13 and then thrashed Norfolk Island 29-6. The Guernsey match hung on the final delivery of the game, when Forsyth knocked out the shot bowl and earned his team two on the final head.

The men’s pair of Blake Signal and Richard Girvan held off Niue’s Dalton Tagelagi and Frederick Tafatu 14-11. In their second match they beat South Africa 16-8, improving as the match wore on.

In the para bowls competition, the visually impaired team of David Stallard and Sue Curran won a tough tussle against Malaysians Siti Ibrahim and Roslene Mohd Taib 11-8 after trailing 8-6. In their second match, they went down to South Africa 14-7.

Jo Edwards got her women’s singles campaign off to a successful start when she beat Saika Nayanmoni of India 21-10.

SQUASH

New Zealand survived the first day of competition at the Commonwealth Games without too much damage.

In first round men’s matches, Martin Knight, seeded 13th, brushed aside Gihan Suwaris of Sri Lanka 11-0, 11-6, 11-3 in just 13 minutes. Paul Coll was kept on court five minutes longer in dismissing Issa Kamara of Sierra Leone 11-0, 11-7, 11-7. Campbell Grayson, the 12th seed, beat Hartaj Bains of Kenya 11-0, 11-4, 11-1.

In the women’s first round, Joelle King, the third seed, dealt summarily with Sarah Taylor of Jersey 11-2, 11-3, 11-2 and Megan Craig comfortably accounted for Safina Malhani 11-1, 11-2, 11-2. However, the third New Zealander, Amanda Landers-Murphy, ran into Jenny Duncalf of England, the eighth seed, and went down 11-2, 11-0, 11-8 in 29 minutes.

Two of the New Zealand men, Knight and Grayson, reached the third round comfortably.

Knight beat local hope Kevin Moran 11-4, 11-3, 9-11, 11-6 in a testing contest, and Grayson beat Micah Franklin of Bermuda 11-1, 11-1, 11-4. However, Coll’s run ended when he went down to fourth-seeded Indian Sourav Ghosal 11-4, 11-4, 11-7.

TABLE TENNIS

The New Zealand table tennis team had a generally successful first day at the Commonwealth Games.

The men’s team beat Kenya 3-0 and then lost a long, gruelling match to Wales 32. The women’s team dealt summarily with Vanuatu and shaded Wales.

In the match against Kenya, Tengteng Liu beat Peter Muturi 11-7, 11-4, 11-7, and Phillip Xiao beat Anthony Ringui 11-7, 11-3, 11-7. In the doubles, Shane Laugesen and Xiao beat Ringui and Michael Otieno 11-3, 11-8, 11-2.

Li Chunli, 52, proved age has not dimmed her ability. Against Vanuatu, she won her singles match against Pareina Matariki 11-7, 11-6, 11-6. Her sister, Karen Li beat Anolyn Lulu 11-7, 11-3, 11-7. In the doubles Jenny Hunt and Chunli beat Rosana Abel and Lulu 11-4, 11-6, 11-7.

The New Zealand women were pushed to the brink before beating Wales 3-2. Chunli had to battle hard to beat Charlotte Carey 11-9, 11-2, 6-11, 11-8, Karen Li beat Naomi Owen 12-10, 12-10, 11-6, Annie Yang and Karen Li lost to Chloe Thomas and Carey 10-12, 11-6, 11-8, 9-11, 11-9, Owen beat Yang 11-4, 11-6, 11-7 and Chunli won the decider over Thomas 11-6, 11-5, 11-6.

BADMINTON

The New Zealand badminton team made a satisfactory if low-key start to their Commonwealth Games campaign at Emirates Arena.

In their first match in the mixed teams competition, the New Zealanders swept aside Guernsey 5-0 without dropping even one game.

Joe Wu won his men’s singles match against Stuart Hardy 21-6, 21-8; Michelle Chan beat Elena Johnson 21-12, 21-9 in the women’s singles, Oliver Leydon-Davis and Susannah Leydon-Davis won the mixed doubles over Gayle Lloyd and Daniel Penney 21-9, 21-14, Oliver Leydon-Davis and Kevin Dennerly-Miniturn beat Hardy and Penney 21-10, 21-12 in the men’s doubles and Chan and Madeleine Stapleton beat Lloyd and Johnson 21-16, 21-13 in the women’s doubles.

The New Zealanders were equally convincing winners in their second outing, against Seychelles.

WEIGHTLIFTING

Auckland weightlifter Lou Guinares was below his best in the B group of the 56kg division.

Guinares, who entered the competition with a best total of 221kg, could manage just 206kg, which placed him second in the B division.

In the snatch, he began promisingly with a lift of 90kg, but then twice failed at 93kg. In the clean and jerk, he had 113kg and 116kg for his first two lifts, but missed his third attempt, at 119kg.

GYMNASTICS

Amelia Coleman and Kelly MacDonald found themselves outclassed in their rhythmic gymnastics competition. Though New Zealand did not field a team, Coleman and MacDonald competed as individuals. In a field of 32, MacDonald was 23rd and Coleman 24th.


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