O’Hara should hur­dle – Gra­ham

Jamaica Gleaner - - TUESDAY SPORTS - Hu­bert Lawrence Gleaner Writer

VET­ERAN HUR­DLES and sprint coach, Ray­mond ‘KC’ Gra­ham, is hop­ing that for­mer Cal­abar High School star, Michael O’Hara, will con­sider a re­turn to the 110-me­tre hur­dles.

Gra­ham cites the com­pe­ti­tion for the na­tional team places in the flat sprints, and O’Hara’s fine high-school ca­reer in the hur­dles as rea­sons for his sug­ges­tion. In ad­di­tion, he says O’Hara’s speed will be an as­set.

O’Hara, who turns 20 on Septem­ber 29, hasn’t hur­dled since his ex­cit­ing In­terSe­condary Schools Sports As­so­ci­a­tion (ISSA) Boys and Girls’ Cham­pi­onship win over World Youth record holder, Ja­heel Hyde, in 2015.

“I think he needs to go back to the sprint hur­dles,” Gra­ham sug­gested.

MCLEOD OPENED THE DOOR

In a ref­er­ence to newly crowned Olympic cham­pion Omar McLeod, he the­o­rised: “There’s too much com­pe­ti­tion in the sprints, and I think what Omar has done, I think he has opened the door.

“When you look at Ja­maica’s sprints, 200, 100, if you re­alise, some of the guys have left and gone over­seas”.

These sprint­ers in­clude Jac­ques Har­vey, 2011 World Univer­sity Games 100m win­ner for Ja­maica; for­mer St El­iz­a­beth Tech­ni­cal High School Michael O’Hara com­pet­ing for Cal­abar High.

(STETHS) and Univer­sity of Tech­nol­ogy (UTech) speed mer­chants Andrew Fisher and Ke­mar­ley Brown; and Win­ston Barnes, lead-off run­ner on Ja­maica’s 2006 World Ju­nior 4x100m cham­pion team. All ran in the Rio Olympics for other coun­tries.

Har­vey and Barnes now rep­re­sent Turkey, while Fisher and Brown run in the red of Bahrain.

Gra­ham be­lieves O’Hara’s fine hur­dling for Cal­abar High is a hint that he could have a

bright fu­ture over the bar­ri­ers.

Even though O’Hara was also a 100-me­tre cham­pion in all Boys and Girls Cham­pi­onships’ classes and took gold and bronze at the 2013 World Youth Cham­pi­onships and the 2014 World Ju­nior Cham­pi­onships, Gra­ham feels cer­tain that the tal­ented young ath­lete should hur­dle.

“With the speed that O’Hara has, and he al­ready has the tech­nique, I think go­ing back to the hur­dles will do a lot of good for him,” Gra­ham said.

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