Thérin throws a golden treble

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On a sparkling night for Jersey athletics, Jo Gorrod also stamped her authority on the 10,000 metres to lift that title by some distance in 37.23.68, – this after taking excellent silvers in the 1,500 and 5,000.

Sophie Twinam also roared in for a fantastic and unexpected silver in the 400 hurdles.

The evening started with the announcement that Lauren Thérin had been awarded the shot putt gold following a successful appeal against Saaremaa’s Leana Vahter, whose coach was illegally inside the competition area during Wednesday evening’s event.

Because of an error in the official procedure – basically the coach was warned, not the athlete – the putts made before the warning were allowed to stand, so Vahter’s second throw of 12.46m qualified for silver.

Vahter had originally equalled Thérin’s winning distance of 12.82m with the final throw, claiming the gold on countback.

The distance was a personal best for Thérin, following her javelin gold on Monday and giving her the opportunity to go for a throwing treble with last night’s discus – which she proceeded to do in style.

Gradually homing in on the record, the 21-year-old achieved it with her fourth throw of 44.91m – smashing the old mark by close on a metre and a half.

A childish appeal by the aforementioned Saaremaa coach – it took the form of a picture of Thérin talking to a young girl helping on the scoreboard – was immediately dismissed by officials.

But it obviously took the shine off what should have been a really happy night for the Jersey girl.

An emotional Thérin, obvious tired and upset by the wranglings of the past day or so – that were categorically none of her making – was still delighted to have won the treble: ‘I feel good about that.

Probably nobody has done that before,’ she said.

The Commonwealth Games athlete, who had never previously won Island Games gold, added: ‘I just hope that people realise how hard I’ve had to work for this.’ They certainly should.

It was a tremendous, hard-earned achievement that will long be remembered.

Jo Gorrod’s gold was in the bag fairly early on and she finished over 1 min 20 sec ahead of silver medallist Louise Perrio of Guernsey, but no 10,000m race is easy, particularly in the heat of Rhodes.

A beaming Gorrod said: ‘It was hard work for the last six or so laps.

I was getting a bit tired, but I just kept pushing on because I really wanted to win that one.

It started really slow but I didn’t want to run on my own so I held back.

It feels really good to win the gold – I’ve been waiting all week to do that.’ No doubt it made up for the Guernsey flag being raised when she received her silver medal for Tuesday night’s 5,000m.

There was a sensational start to the proceedings when 17-year-old Sophie Twinam really came of age in the 400m hurdles.

Most of the media’s focus will have been on former Games champion Claire Lidster, particularly after her gusty run for bronze in the 100 hurdles on Tuesday.

But when it came to the final bend of the longer event it was 17-year-old Hautlieu student Twinam in lane 5 who held her form the better to snatch a super silver in 64.25 – a huge 1.4 seconds off her personal best.

And just as impressive was the youngster’s immediate action in trying to console her distraught team-mate who had collapsed on the track after finishing fifth in 66.27.

The delighted teenager, who won a relay silver two years ago, said: ‘I just went out hard, determined not to let it faze me if I was caught.

I hurdled well and I’m so pleased.

I hate finishing fourth – I finish fourth so often!’ The youngster’s next challenge is a simpler one: ‘I want to get a tan,’ she beamed.

Had it been in the afternoon, she could have achieved that on the podium, such was the length of winner Angela L?pez Mart”s Menorcan anthem – several times longer than the winning time of 63.29.

There were no other medals for Jersey on the night, but the excellent performances kept on coming.

Ben Silva made a slight improvement on his morning’s PB of 11.4 and finished agonisingly just one place shy of a place in a good class 100m final.

In her first Games, Amy Dingle outdid that, beating her previous best of 5.14m in the long jump with her first jump – and then stretching it with her next two efforts, eventually finish- ing seventh with 5.28m.

Jenna Murphy, the high jump silver medalist, recorded 4.93m for ninth place.

Katie Silva, wife of Ben, ran 2.20.16 for the 800m, finishing sixth in a race won by Eilidh Mackenzie of the Western Isles in 2.11.91.

Top hope Stephen Prosser sadly had to pull out injured.

Scott Roberts left the volleyball hall to throw a javelin 50.84m for seventh place, with Russel Price ninth after a best effort of 45.03.

The event was won with an Island Games record 62.59 by Sander Suurhans of Saaremaa.

Claire Lidster and Sophie Twinam both qualified for tonight’s 400m hurdles final, finishing first and second in their heats.

Stephanie Le Cornu, a 400m runner, ran a PB of 27.4 in the 200m but failed to reach tonight’s final.

Jersey also have two qualifiers through to the semi-finals of the men’s 100 metres, Stephen Prosser and Ben Silva, the later setting a PB of 11.4.

Another one making her Games début, Jenny Brown got a feel of the atmosphere in the discus ahead of her top event, this morning’s hammer, by getting close to her PB with consistent throws, the best of which was 29.84.

‘The other competitors were really friendly,’ said the teenager.

‘The Caymans girls even gave me a bracelet.’ Now that is the spirit of the Friendly Games.

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