Wednesday January 10, 2018
Memorable sport stories of 2017 Many Wellingtonians are not only keen to stay fit and healthy, some are also great achievers. There are a few stories of 2017 that stay in mind, and we have a closer look at them. At the start of the year, former Onslow College rugby players meet in first reunion in 30 years. In February, Johnsonville cricketers Scott Mudgway and Chris Leach celebrate their 200th and 100th games.
A month later, the Johnsonville Premier One Men’s Softball team make history when they take out a Wellington competition for the first time in their club’s 80 year history. And in June, Ruby Muir of Karori completes the Wellington Women’s Half Marathon in record time. Later that month, javelin talent Cam Robinson enters the Oceania Area Championships in Fiji win-
Javelin newcomer Cam Robinson from Karori.
High jumper Imogen Skelton.
ning the U18 comfortably with a throw of 63.03 metres. That isn’t Cam’s only success, however. The 17-year-old Karori local also grabbed the National U18 title and the Athletics Wellington Throwers Award at the annual Athletics Wellington prizegiving. Another young athlete proves her skills overseas: Imogen Skelton heads to the Bahamas to represent New Zealand in the 2017 Commonwealth Youth Games
in July. The high jumper, who visits Samuel Marsden Collegiate in Karori, takes out the third place with a 176 metres jump – a personal best. Shihan Peter Jennings of Johnsonville celebrates an outstanding achievement in his karate career that only a few Kiwis have managed. In August, he is inducted into both the Australasian Martial Arts Hall of Fame and the World
Karate Union Hall of Fame which recognised his dedication to martial arts over the past 42 years. In October, John “Mystery” Morrison – a well-known and highly respected former international cricketer – is inducted as a life member at Onslow Cricket Club’s 86th Annual General Meeting. And at the end of the year, Karori sports people finally get their long-awaited artificial turf.
Councillor Simon Woolf referees the first football game on Karori’s new artificial turf.
with Jacob Page
Catch A Million dealt politically correct blow
ABOVE: Shihan Peter Jennings and karate students Alyssa Narayanan, Jonty Nguon and Liam Love. RIGHT: Karori athlete Ruby Muir wins the Wellington Women’s Half Marathon. PHOTOS: Independent Herald File
The changes to the ‘Catch A Million’ six - catching competition during New Zealand’s summer of cricket shows how political correctness is overriding common sense and fun. The competition sees $50,000 put up at each Black Caps short form fixture this year for anyone wearing a designated orange shirt who can take an unassisted one-handed catch. With Colin Munro blasting the hapless West Indies over the rope 10 times, it’s fair to say there were plenty of thrills and spills as people did what they could to take a catch. That included falling over unsuspecting people, including children. The promotion which was done several years ago has naturally proven wildly successful. However after what I will call ‘The Fun Police’ questioned the safety of people trying to take such crowd catches, the decision has been made to have designated catch zones and to ban any diving like we are all at a motel pool. I don’t want to see anyone hurt, let alone children but realistically if we try to remove all risk from the world, a lot of the fun goes with it. The best way to keep kids 100 percent safe is to not take them to any cricket matches. It’s simply PC madness. The competition adds colour and excitement to a six. I’ve clattered into kids in an attempt
to snare a lollipop at a lolly scramble imagine what I and many others will do for $50,000. Yes, there will be the odd person that cops a stray knee but the reality of serious injury is quite low. Despite the barrage of sixes over the summer already, there hasn’t been one injury. A hugely popular promotion which encourages people to get down to the ground and watch live sport has now had its brakes pumped because of those who live with a worse case scenario mindset. Life is about risk and managing it. The new rules make it much harder to get a winner for the prize and means people are being told where to sit if they want an outside chance at winning the cash. That’s what it is, make no mistake, it’s an outside chance at $50,000. To catch a cricket ball that has been hit with enough power it flies into the crowd is tough enough without having to do it with one hand. Herding all potential winners into a couple of spots on the ground means it’ll be like feeding time at a pig farm with everyone getting in each other’s way and preventing a catch being taken. This is another win for the politically correct pandas and another low point for those who want to have fun in the sun in this mixed up, muddled up world we live in.
Independent Herald 10-01-18