7 Apr 2014

Eleven in Initial Glasgow Selection

Eleven in Initial Glasgow Selection

Author: IMGSTG Admin  /  Categories: News  / 

The New Zealand Olympic Committee in conjunction with Athletics New Zealand have named the first athletes to represent New Zealand at this year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. 

The athletes named today include several world-class international competitors in Valerie Adams (shot put), Nick Willis (1500) and Stuart Farquhar (javelin). Between them, these athletes hold three gold, two silver and one bronze medals from previous Commonwealth Games, and two gold and one silver from Olympic Games.

New Zealand Olympic Committee CEO Kereyn Smith says she is delighted to have the team namings underway. “Glasgow 2014 will be an outstanding event for the high performance athletes confirmed to the team today, testing them against some of the best athletes in the world as well as providing them with elite multi-sport experience in the build-up to Rio 2016.” 

Sarah Cowley (high jump) competed in the London Olympics and the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games in the heptathlon so will have big event experience to call on when she competes in Glasgow. Cowley is the latest athlete to achieve the standard, jumping 1.89 and placing second at the Australian championships over the weekend.

The other seven track and field athletes named today will all be attending their first Commonwealth Games.

Shot putters Tom Walsh and Jacko Gill form a dynamic duo in the men’s shot put and have realistic chances to win medals. They have both had recent success on the international stage with Walsh bursting onto the world stage with a bronze medal at the 2014 World Indoor championships in Poland, throwing 21.26. Gill is the current world junior champion and record holder at 23.00 with a lighter implement.

The pair met in competition for the first time in over two years at last week’s New Zealand championships with Walsh the victor in a New Zealand resident and all-comers record. Gill’s throw in second place would have won every other New Zealand championship contested.

The selection also includes African based distance runners Zane and Jake Robertson (both 5000m), who had some very good international results in 2013 and have run just outside the New Zealand records for  5000m and 10,000m respectively.

Angie Smit (800m) finished fourth at the 2013 World University Games and had her major championships debut at last year’s Moscow world championships. She will benefit from the experience when she runs in Glasgow.

Exciting young throwers Julia Ratcliffe (hammer) and Siositina Hakeai (discus) complete the initial selection. Both athletes finished fourth at the 2012 world junior championships and have continued to improve since then. Ratcliffe further improving her national record and 20 year old Hakeai improving former World Champion and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Beatrice Faumuina’s national U20 record.

Athletics New Zealand selection convener Graham Seatter, a Commonwealth Games athlete the last time the Games were held in Scotland (Edinburgh 1986) is pleased the New Zealand Olympic Committee was able to confirm eleven selections today. 

“This will allow those athletes who have reached to selection criteria to now concentrate on their preparation for Glasgow and perform up to their very best,“ said Seatter.

Marathon, Decathlon and Heptathlon athletes will be named in the second group of selections on in May and a final selection will take place in early June.

The New Zealand Commonwealth Games Team is expected to be made up of around 200 athletes competing in 17 sports. The Commonwealth Games take place 23 July – 3 August 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland. 

Selected athlete details:

Valerie Adams
Event – Shot Put
Date of Birth – 6 October 1984 (29)
PB - 21.24m (Oceania & NZ Record)
Residence –  Auckland
Club - Pakuranga 
Coach – Jean-Pierre Egger
Olympic Champion 2008 +2012
World Champion 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013
World Indoor Champion 2008, 2012, 2014
Commonwealth Champion 2006, 2010
Continental Cup Champion 2010
IAAF Diamond League Champion 2011, 2012, 2013
Unbeaten streak 46
Unbeaten since August 2010

Sarah Cowley
Event – High Jump
Date of Birth – 3 February 1984 (30)
PB – 1.91
Residence – Auckland
Club – North Harbour Bays
Coach – Elena Vinogradova
NZ Rep Olympic Games 2012 Heptathlon
NZ Rep Commonwealth Games 2006 Heptathlon
NZ Rep World University Games 2009 & 2011 Heptathlon

Stuart Farquhar
Event – Javelin
Date of Birth – 15 March 1982 (32)
PB – 86.31
Residence – Hamilton
Club – Hamilton City Hawks
Coach – Debbie Strange
Commonwealth Games Silver medallist 2010
World University Games Silver medallist 2009
3 x Olympian
4 x World Championships
14 x New Zealand Senior Champion (13 consecutive titles)

Jacko Gill
Event – Shot Put
Date of Birth – 20 Dec 1994 (19)
PB – 20.38m
Residence – Auckland
Club – Takapuna
Coach – Kirsten Hellier
World Junior Champion 2010
World Youth Champion 2011
World Junior Champion 2012
Set NZ Senior Record at 16 years
World Junior record holder 23.00
World Youth best holder 24.45
Holder of 12 World Age best performances

Siositina Hakeai
Event – Discus
Date of Birth – 1 March 1994 (20)
PB – 59.65
Residence – Auckland
Club – Manurewa
Coach – Matt Dallow
No 2 NZ All-time discus
NZ U20, U19, U17 record holder
4th place World Junior champs 2012
NZ Rep World Youth Champs 2011
NZ Rep World Junior Champs 2010, 2012
NZ discus champion 2012, 2013, 2014
NZ Shot Put champion 

Julia Ratcliffe
Event - Hammer
Date of Birth – 14 July 1993 (20)
PB - 68.80 (NZ Record)
Residence –  Princeton, New Jersey, USA
Club - Hamilton City Hawks 
Coach – Dave Ratcliffe
4th place World Junior Champs 2012
8th place World University Games 2013
10th place World Youth Champs 2009
NZ record holder

Jake Robertson
Event - 5000
Date of Birth – 14 November 1989 (24)
PB - 13:15.54
Residence – Iten, Kenya
Club - Hamilton City Hawks
15th place 5000m World Championships 2011
28th place 5000m World Championships 2013

Zane Robertson
Event - 5000
Date of Birth – 14 November 1989 (24)
PB - 13:13.83
Residence – Addis Ababa
Club - Hamilton City Hawks
14th place 5000m World Championships 2013
12th place 3000m World Indoor Championships 2014

Angela Smit
Event – 800 metres
Date of Birth –16 Aug 1991 (22)
PB –2:00.31
Residence – Rangiora
Club – University of Canterbury
Coach – Maria Hassan
4th place 800m World University Games 2013
5th place 1500m World University Games 2013
NZ rep World Junior champs 2008, 2010
No 3 NZ All time 800m
NZ 800m champion 2012, 2013, 2014
NZ 1500m champion 2014

Tom Walsh
Event – Shot Put
Date of Birth – 1 Mar 1992 (22)
PB – 21.26 (NZ & Oceania record)
Residence – Timaru
Club - South Canterbury
Coaches – Ian Baird & Andrew Maclennan
3rd place World 2014 indoor championships
Oceania record holder
5 x NZ senior shot put champion
NZ Discus champion 2013

Nicholas Willis
Event - 1500m
Date of Birth – 25 April 1983 (30)
PB - 3:30.35 NZ Record
Residence –  Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
Club - Hutt Valley Harriers
Coach – Ron Warhurst
Silver medallist Olympic Games 2008
12th place World Championships 2011
9th place Olympic Games 2012
Commonwealth Champion 2006
Bronze medallist Commonwealth Games 2010


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