Dean keen on her green and gold duties
Echuca shooter Kiara Dean has secured green and gold honours for a second time after being named on the Australian Junior World Championship Team.
Dean was named in the shotgun team with the highest junior selection score after strong showings in Victorian and NSW state titles.
A winning performance in the women’s trap at the NSW ISSF Shotgun State Titles earlier this year helped the young shooter’s qualification.
In a COVID-19-ravaged domestic shooting season where putting your best score forward was crucial for national selection, Dean said she was glad she took her opportunities.
“It’s very exciting to make the team after lockdown,” Dean said.
“It’s something that I was aiming for and one of my goals to do again this year.
“Out of the six competitions that you need to go to, only four or five ended up going ahead and it was just lucky that I attended every one.
“A lot of hard work went into it; going to competitions, taking opportunities that others may not have had.
“The (events) in Newcastle and Queensland, a lot of people didn’t go — they didn’t see them as really necessary.
“The way we looked at it was if you have the chance to go, you go, because you don’t know if the others are going to go ahead.”
The Echuca Clay Target Club prodigy was named in the side bound for the ISSF Junior World Championships to be held in Peru in late September.
But the national side won’t be jetting out to compete in Las Palmas due to the ongoing COVID-19 health risks in the country.
However, Shooting Australia announced selected members would receive development grants to cover the costs of continued training.
Between training and travelling throughout the country to compete, Dean said the costs could add up.
“That (grant) definitely helps out a bit,” she said.
“It’s not a cheap sport, so every little bit you can get is definitely beneficial and it’s super beneficial to be able to have that to put towards a bit of extra training.”
Earlier this year, Dean was also selected as a member of the new Shooting Australia National Pathways Squad.
The squad is one of three tiers of a new-look national squad, with the pathways squad dedicated to those considered capable of achieving higher honours and who have demonstrated commitment to succeed in the sport.
After achieving that goal, Dean said she was keen to keep climbing the ranks as she creeps closer to senior competition.
“I’d love to make the team next year and just continue to build up,” she said.
“When I turn 21, I go into the adult category, so I really want to be getting my qualification scores up to the level of the adult females.
“At the moment, I’m looking to increase by a target or two and get the qualification so that in two years I’ll be able to make the adults team as well as the juniors.”