Aaron Powell led the charge for the Suva team over the two day athletics competition during the Fiji Games over the weekend winning 2 out of the 23 gold medal haul and helped his relay team come from behind to snatch the 4x100m relay gold away from team Taveuni.
Overall Medal Tally
Earlier on in the day, Powell ran to a personal and seasonal best 10.84s in the open men’s 100m heats which moved him up the 2017 national rankings to number 3 behind Keasi Naidroka of Marist and Samuela Railoa of the Jetrunners club. However he did not stop there as later on in the day, Powell outclassed the field to win gold in the 100m final in a time of 10.99s, with the absence of Vilisoni Rarasea, and then narrowly beating Samuela Railoa and Shane Tuvusa in the final of the 200m, stopping the clock at a season’s and personal best of 21.85s which has moved him up to number 4 in this year’s national rankings.
RKS quarter milers Kameli Sauduadua and Sailosi Tubuilagi both looked to be in the very form that they were in during the Tailevu Zone running 49.18s and 48.87s respectively. Sailosi’s time was just enough to beat 2017 400m champion Samuela Railoa who stopped the clock at 49.41s and team mate Kameli who clocked a 49.99s in the finals. Under 18 800m Oceania Champion, Petero Veitaqomaki backed up his 1min 57.65s with a gold medal run of 1min 59.20s in what seemed to be a Petero vs. the clock kind of race.
High school sprint queen Makereta Naulu managed to win both the 100m and 200m finals but it wasn’t made easy as she was in a bit of a dog fight with former ACS sprinter Elenoa Sailosi. With her elegant running form, Elenoa made quick work in the 100m and led for the first 60m or so but then was overtook by Naulu’s streamlined powerful running. The story was also the same in the 200m where Elenoa looked to be in control coming off the turn only to have Naulu pass her up once she got into the straightaway.
Errol Qaqa continued his hurdling prowess by shaving almost .20s off of his personal best moving him up to 8th spot in Fiji’s top 10 all-time hurdlers with a 15.21s In the field events, Malakai Kaiwalu leapt to a 2.05m in the high jump equaling his performance that saw him take gold at this year’s Oceania Championships while Shawntelle Lockington came up 3cm shy of her personal best only managing to clear the bar at 1.65m. Mustafa Fall and Mereoni Bonasere maintained their Shot Put dominance however Fall was closely challenged in the discus by former high school teammate Setareki Matau. Despite not having ample time throwing the discus in training, both Fall and Matau threw seasonal bests of 46.32m and 45.30m respectively.
There was a fair bit of drama in the Long Jump, 2017 number 1 ranked Sireli Bulivorovoro and Natabua jump genius Kitione Nasau were both out jumped by 2017 number 4 Jethro Lockington despite unfavorable performances, Lockington capitalized on his consistent attendance to all organised Athletics Fiji competitions and dealt well with the pressure.
Eugene Vollmer regained his top spot bounding out to a 14.45m to win gold ahead of new found triple jump sensation Kalaveti Mokosiro. Fane Sauvakacolo also claimed gold in the women’s triple jump equaling her personal best of 11.08m that saw her win gold at this year’s coke games.
The final trials for the Mini SPG will be held this Saturday and Athletics Fiji will be looking to name the final team next week.
For competition results click here.
Photo Credit: Rusiate Baleilevuka, Fijivillage (09/09/2017)