Kolesnikoff eyes Nairobi 2017
It was a clean sweep in the Under-18 Men’s Shot Put for Australia in the first day of the 2016 Melanesian Athletics Championship at the ANZ Stadium in Suva yesterday. Gold medal winner Alexander Kolesnikoff threw a distance of 16.55 metres, Jack Redmond came second (16.12) and Liam Gartlan settled for bronze (15.49). Kolesnikoff said winning gold has boosted his confidence as his main goal is to make it to the World Youth Championship in Nairobi, Kenya, next year.
“It feels really good to have won gold because I have worked really hard in the last couple of months,” Kolesnikoff said.
“This is a real confidence boost for me because I had a couple of shockers in the National Championship back home but this is better and I am happy with my result.
“I was really confident I would do really well which is my main focus, I was not too worried about winning a gold medal.
“It wasn’t the medal that mattered it was more of the fact of distance because I am hoping to get to World Youth Championship.
“I was initially aiming for 17 metres but I just missed it and it’s alright it’s just a step towards qualification at the Youth Championship next year.” The 16-year-old from Sydney, New South Wales knows the immense task ahead of him if he wants to stand a chance of competing at Youth Championships. “I need to work much harder now and focus on the little bit which always matters and judging from my performance in the Melanesian Athletics Championship, I know what I need to work on,” he said. “I have been taking part in shot put since I was about 10-years-old but I didn’t become serious about it until four years ago.
“It was good to have an all-Aussie win and it is good to see other countries as well and see how they throw and place myself where I think I can get to and where I am now.” The 2016 Melanesian Athletics Championship finishes tomorrow. Edited by Osea Bola