Waves test the ju­niors

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - SPORT -

Five clubs from Mis­sion Beach to Port Dou­glas con­trib­uted 60 com­peti­tors for the team called North Queens­land that com­peted in Youth Surf Life­sav­ing Cham­pi­onships held down at North Burleigh, in very chal­leng­ing con­di­tions.

Port Dou­glas had its best rep­re­sen­ta­tion yet with nine com­peti­tors head­ing down but un­for­tu­nately our 10th com­peti­tor, Ja­cob Booij, did not make the trip as he had an in­jured knee.

Not only were the waves large and break­ing a long way out, but they were con­stant. For­tu­nately thanks to months of train­ing, our kids were very fit.

They needed to be as it took a huge ef­fort just to get out to the marker cans. They then had to con­tend with the large surf com­ing in.

They never gave up and per­formed ad­mirably in con­di­tions that they have never ex­pe­ri­enced be­fore. It was awe­some to see and it didn’t mat­ter if you were from Port Dou­glas or Currumbin, El­lis Beach or North­cliff, each and ev­ery nip­per had to put in all they had to com­bat those con- di­tions. Jonte Revell was our youngest com­peti­tor in un­der 11s. We then had Sophie Knight, Oliver Lukin, Kade Bick­ford and Mur­ray Col­bridge in the un­der 12s. Un­der 15s had a strong rep­re­sen­ta­tion as well with Mia Devine-Cameron, Tara Buls, Josh Lukin, Moses Han­net-Wade and Mitchell Knight.

With around 1800 com­peti­tors down there it was great to see all of th­ese kids per­form­ing well. Some made it to the quar­ter fi­nals, some to semis, some to fi­nals and Sophie Knight even man­aged to gain a bronze medal in the un­der 12 surf teams.

We are a bit dif­fer­ent in that we get our kids to per­form all the events. Most com­peti­tors from down south spe­cial­ize in one dis­ci­pline only whether it is sprints, boards or flags. Our kids give ev­ery­thing a red hot go and as such prob­a­bly do an aw­ful lot more work than most down there. Some of the great mem­o­ries from this year’s event in­cluded Josh Lukin get­ting pounded by wave af­ter wave af­ter wave.

Try­ing to push through even though he was dead last. Fi­nally he gets through to surge past a heap of kids to come in ninth! His brother, Oliver got 2nd in the board semi-fi­nal stand­ing there on the fin­ish line be­tween two kids twice his size.

Moses scored his best ever time in the 2km and run and af­ter five years of try­ing, Mitchell Knight fi­nally got his first flag. It’s th­ese mo­ments that are spe­cial.

Ev­ery one of th­ese young ath­letes de­serve a huge pat on the back for rep­re­sent­ing them­selves, and our re­gion, so im­pres­sively.

North­ern Qld team mem­bers had to con­tend with rougher seas down south

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