Kirani delivers! – Third Aliann Pompey Invitational lives up to expectations
DPI, Guyana, Sunday, July 1, 2018
Kirani James yesterday delivered a spectacular performance in front of scores of Guyanese spectators, comfortably winning the 400m race and setting a new track record at 44.99 seconds.
The performance by the Grenadian track and field star ensured that the Aliann Pompey Invitational, premier international track and field competition held at the Leonora Track and Field Centre, lived up to expectations.
Finishing in second place was Nigerian, Chidi Okezie, the 2016 African Championship bronze medalist who clocked running 45.97 seconds and Guyana’s very own Winston George was third with 46.13 seconds.
Despite the inclement weather, James said that he was happy with the way he finished the race. “We had some rain earlier so that kind of affected preparations but I am good” he said.
George who finished in third position said it was a great experience going up against Kirani James. “I came out here, I gave it what I had and it was good” George stated.
The triple jump event was the second most anticipated event which featured Guyana’s Commonwealth Gold medalist Troy Doris. However, Doris who just came off an injury failed to make the podium after finishing in fourth position.
Doris’s first time competing on home soil was trumped by Donald Scott of the United States who finished first soaring 17.22 metres, Christian Napoles of Cuba who leaped 16.96 metres to finish second and Suriname’s Miguel Van Assen finished third after jumping 16.67 metres.
The 100 metres race was also full of excitement. Local boy Emanuel Archibald clocked 10.29 seconds to win the event ahead of Trinidad and Tobago’s Kyle Greaux who finished second with 10.39 seconds and Yancarlos Martinez of the Dominican Republic in third with 10.43 seconds. Archibald is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology via scholarship by the National Sports Commission at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Mona Campus.
Organiser of the meet, Aliann Pompey said that she was satisfied with the overall performances by the athletes. “We got to see a world class field in most events compete, we got to see the athletes locally from Guyana run their personal best so all around it is good for track and field, it is good for sports, it is good for Guyana” Pompey underscored.
Minister of Social Cohesion Dr. George Norton noted his satisfaction with the performance by the local athletes. “This obviously is the start and we are hoping that with this alone, we would create a kind of an environment that is similar to that of an international meet and it will prepare our athletes if they have to perform abroad” the Minister stated.
Director of Sport Christopher Jones, Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection Keith Scott, President of the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG), Aubrey Hutson among other senior officials were present at the event. This year’s Aliann Pompey Invitation feature 25 different countries and over 100 athletes and 17 track and field events.
By: Isaiah Braithwaite
Images: Vish Babulall