Mon | Dec 10, 2018

Williams hails pioneer Smith - Jamaicans look to close Games in style

Published:Saturday | April 14, 2018 | 12:00 AMAkino Ming/Staff Reporter
Daniel Thomas-Dodd won the women Shot Put with a throw of 19.36m at the Commonwealth Games at the Carrara Stadium, in Gold Coast, Australia. PHOTO/Collin Reid courtesy of Guardian Life, Courts, VMBS, Sports Development Foundation (SDF) and Alliance Investments.

Kimberly Williams said that it is the blueprint set by national record holder Trecia-Kaye Smith, which is enabling herself and Shanieka Ricketts to excel in the triple-jump.

Williams' comments came after the two Jamaicans entertained the world with a ding-dong battle in the event at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and was one of several high-points in what has been an impressive showing by the Jamaicans on Australia's Gold Coast.

Williams, who was trailing her teammate for majority of the competition, leaped to a personal best of 14.64m on her final jump to overtake Ricketts, who had done a season's best performance of 14.52m to separate herself from the competition earlier.

"Shanieka and I are just following the blueprint that Trecia laid out. She made us know that Jamaicans can excel in the triple jump. She has jumped over 15 metres and that's a goal that Shanieka and I have and we are just hoping that we can just continue with this friendly rivalry and continue to push each other," Williams told The Gleaner.

Smith won Jamaica's first global medal in the event at the 2005 IAAF World Athletics Championships in Helsinki, Finland. She also owns the national record in the event at 15.11 metres.

And according to Williams, the friendly rivalry she has developed with Ricketts has set the platform for both of them to produce distances like Smith did.

The former Vere Technical High School standout said there are several things she learnt from the performance, which she believes will help her this season. One of those things is eliciting her beast mode by talking to herself on the runway.

"When I was on the runway, I asked myself one question. I was like 'Kimmie are you a Champion?' and answered myself 'Yes, you are'. And I started laughing and I just ran and jumped ," Williams recalled of her final jumped of the competition, which enabled her to retain her title.

Williams and Ricketts' one two finish was one of three quinellas for Team Jamaica at the Games.

Fedrick Dacres and Traves Smikle also took the top two spots in the men's discus final yesterday. Dacres threw the games record 68.20m to win the gold medal, while his training partner Smikle grabbed the silver with 63.98m.

Natoyo Goule churned out a lifetime best performance in the women's 800m to win a bronze medal in 1:58.82 seconds. The race was won by South Africa's Caster Semenya in 1:56.68.

2015 World Champion Danielle Williams claimed silver in the women's 100m hurdles in 12.78 seconds. Her team-mate, Yanique Thompson, secured the bronze medal with 12.97 seconds, while Megan Simmonds finished seventh in 13.18 seconds. The race was won by Nigeria's Oluwatobiloba Amusan in 12.68 seconds.

Team Jamaica is poised to exceed its best Commonwealth Games medal count of 22, which was secured at the 2006 and 2014 installments, as it has already equalled that count with the relays and Clive Pullen in the men's triple jump still to come




12:15 a.m. Men's Triple Jump FINAL - Clive Pullen

1:38 a.m. Women's 4x400m Relay FINAL

2:07 a.m. Men's 4x400m Relay FINAL