Hard work pays off in gold at waka ama club fi­nals

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By KRIS DANDO

The girls of the Toa Waka Ama Club in­ter­me­di­ate crew had one thing on their minds dur­ing the long hours of train­ing be­fore na­tion­als: gold.

Their hard work paid huge div­i­dends on Lake Kara­piro in Jan­uary, as they pad­dled their way to two golds, in the 1000m and 500m fi­nals. They won the 1000m race by a stag­ger­ing 36 sec­onds.

There was re­lief, joy, scream­ing and tears im­me­di­ately af­ter their vic­to­ries and as they took to the podium.

Six days a week, be­fore and af­ter school, the girls, who have been pad­dling as a team for only 12 months, put in the time on the water.

‘‘We love it and were de­ter­mined to win, to get the gold you have to do what’s nec­es­sary,’’ Mar­ley Robben said.

Their coach, 20- year- old Pae­gan Ed­wards-Topia, said she and fel­low coach, 19-year-old Ty­rone Gar­diner, were proud of what the crew achieved.

‘‘I told them [be­fore the 1000m fi­nal] that the gold medal is there wait­ing for you. The way they blitzed ev­ery­one, I couldn’t be­lieve what was hap­pen­ing and got very teary. I’m still on a high now.’’

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