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Thursday December 20, 2018

SPORT

Lyall Bay junior lifeguards succeed in monster event

Lyall Bay SLSC junior members Kit Jones, 15, Loredana Unsworth, 15, and Pippa Nicol, 14, celebrate their success. PHOTO: Jamie Adams By Jamie Adams

The future is bright at the Lyall Bay Surf Lifesaving Club after several of its younger members came away with medals at a gruelling long-distance event at Mount Maunganui on the weekend. Teenagers Kit Jones, Loredana Unsworth, Alex Edmonds and Pippa Nicol reached the podium in a number of age group events at the Mt Monster, a 25km high-endurance multisport competition consisting of a 5km run, 1.5km swim, 12km paddle and 6km board swim. All athletes must be trained and qualified lifeguards in order to compete in the annual event - each athlete is required to complete a minimum of 25 voluntary hours to patrol the beach at Lyall Bay. Kit, 15, was third in the men’s U19s seventh male overall in his first attempt as an individual. He competed as part of a team in last year’s Mt Monster. Alex, 17, was third in the women’s U19s while Pippa, 14, won the Mini Monster, a slightly shorter event for under-14s. It was

her second Mini Monster title in a row. The real standout was Loredana, who won the U19 women’s event despite being just 15. She also finished second for women in the overall competition. Remarkably, this was also Loredana’s first attempt at the Monster as an individual. The teens are now back home and will have a short break from training before returning early in the new year back to train for the shorter faster surf sport events with the focus of Surf Life Saving New Zealand Championships in March 2019. Club administrator Fran De Gregorio is thrilled with the achievements of the next generation of surf lifesaving athletes. “It’s way better than what we achieved two years ago,” she says. “Our club is very young so it shows the future of the club is very good. The fact Kit is the leading men’s under-16 athlete shows the calibre of our members.” Coach Rob Nicol says his sport lifeguards train very hard, with Loredana doing up to 12 swimming sessions a week at the pool and in the surf.

Sports talk

with Jacob Page

Schmidt sharper than razor’s edge for ABs coach On the surface, Scott Robertson is the front runner to be the next All Blacks coach - however I hope the NZRU dig a little deeper. The two time Super Rugby winning coach with the Crusaders has not put a foot wrong over the past two years but is lacking experience. The All Blacks coaches of the modern, professional era (1995) who have had the most success have coached extensively both provincially and internationally overseas before landing the role of All Blacks mentor. Both Graham Henry and Hansen, who have each directed the men in black to back-to-back World Cup crowns in 2011 and 2015, had long stints coaching Wales. No doubt that time helped mould both of them into better coaches. Wales, while not a rugby powerhouse, is a place just as passionate about the sport as New Zealand is. There’s a level of scrutiny and accountability that would have served both men well when they came home to be part of the All Blacks set up. My pick would be Ireland coach Joe Schmidt but if he intends to stay true to his word of a coaching sabbatical after next year’s World Cup to focus on family, then the field seems wide open. When coaches with limited experience have been picked, it has not gone well. John Mitchell comes racing to mind

when he was thrown in the deep end and his team floundered at the 2003 World Cup in Australia. Sure, Henry failed at the same tournament four years later but the team had been dominant for his tenure up until then. Robertson has been like a shooting star, taking every opportunity available to him over the past two years. Success at age-group level and the Crusaders can’t be ignored. There’s just no substitute for experience and success and Schmidt, has taken Ireland from a team considered handy on their day to a genuine threat to become world champions in Japan. If Robertson misses out this time, it will not be a fatal blow to his aspirations. Perhaps he will have to coach another international team first. Ireland would be keen for sure. Former Chiefs coach and current All Blacks assistant Ian Foster is also a likely contender having done a similar apprenticeship as Hansen did under Henry. However, as head coach of the Chiefs, Foster never got to the heights he could have with the squad at his disposal and that’s always been my hang-up. One major focus of the next coach will be player retention. The black jersey is proving not as alluring as European money for players who are getting younger and younger.

EASTERN SUBURBS

SPORTS TRUST SPONSORED BY MIRAMAR & KILBIRNIE THE EASTERN SUBURBS SPORTS TRUST HAS GRANTED $7,000 IN NOVEMBER 2018 TO EASTERN SUBURBS SPORTS TEAMS AND INDIVIDUALS, KINDERGARTENS, SCHOOLS, COLLEGES AND SPORTS CLUBS ETC.

BRIAN GALT (ESST) WITH PHIL GIBBONS – CEO SPORT WELLINGTON – GRANT TOWARDS ROUND THE BAYS

15

DEAN GALT (ESST) WITH RILEY MANUEL AND JOHNNY KHOUN – TRAVEL TO NATIONAL AGE GROUP FOOTBALL TOURNAMENT

BRIAN GALT (ESST) WITH MEMBERS OF THE TE ORA HOU WELLINGTON EAST – COST OF RUNNING KAIRANGI TOUCH RUGBY COMPETITION

THE EASTERN SUBURBS SPORTS TRUST HAS GRANTED TO THE FOLLOWING EASTERN SUBURBS SPORTS TEAMS AND INDIVIDUALS • CITY SWIM – REPAINT

OF POOL

THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF MONEY THE EASTERN SUBURBS SPORTS TRUST HAS GIVEN AWAY TO DATE $1,740,125

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