Jersey move up a gear

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At the close of competition on Sunday, Jersey were languishing in eighth place in the table… but four gold, seven silver and three bronze medals later, and we’re flying high in fourth.

Once again, it was down to the shooters to get the point-scoring going, as rifle duo Andy Chapman and Steve Bouchard scored silver in their first ever Island Games event.

Then, later that day, Jersey claimed its very first gold medal, thanks to a fine team effort from Jennie Ward and Mary Norman in the women’s team sport pistol event.

There were plenty more gold medals to come, too – Jersey’s strong swim team proved, once again, that they really will be the ones to watch in the pool, as Ian Black won the 200m IM and the 100m breaststroke, Katie Speller topped the girls’ 400m IM and won silver in the 200m freestyle, JJ Gallichan claimed silver in the boys’ 1,500m, and both boys’ and girls’ relay teams surprised everyone with two more silvers in their events.

A gold or silver medal is now guaranteed for the table tennis team, who finished their final group games with two straight 7-0 wins over Alderney and Menorca, plus a good win over Aland, which put them second in the group behind Gotland.

That alone assured them of a bronze medal, but a nail-biting win over Guernsey this morning put them into this afternoon’s final, probably against Gotland.

The badminton players, however, will be going home without a team medal – although the day got off to a promising start, with a semi-final play-off win over Isle of Man for a place in the semis, they lost their semi-final proper to Greenland, and then the resultant bronze medal play-off to Gotland, to finish fourth.

Our 1st XI men’s football squad could not have had a better start to their Island Games campaign, with a 1-0 win over Rhodes, which leaves them needing just one point from today’s game against the Isle of Wight to qualify for the semi-finals.

Meanwhile, the women overcame a substantial first-day defeat with their first win of the Games, a 3-1 victory over Greenland.

The athletes had another strong day at the track with Peter Irving winning a silver medal in 53.81 the 400m hurdles – losing out once again to Junior Hines from the Cayman Islands who ran 52.67. Zane Duquemin continued his good form with a bronze medal in the shot putt, throwing 14.60 to finish second.

Toby Edwards finished fifth in the 3,000m steeplechase having earlier qualified for tonight’s 800m final, Jenna Murphy was tenth in the long jump final with 4.84m, and Victoria Barratt finished the 10,000m in 42.24.57 for eighth.

Gemma Dawkins will take a prime spot in the 400m final tonight after racing to a win in the heat in 56.63. She is joined by Sophie Twinam who was second in her heat, running 58.34.

It didn’t go Jersey’s way in the ladies’ team tennis event yesterday as they lost their semi-final 2-0 to Menorca, Rebecca Edwards going down 6-0, 6-0 to Francisca Sintes, and Katie Gouyette 6-3, 6-1 to Sara Casanovas Benejam.

In the bronze medal play off home support helped Aland to the victory, with Edwards suffering a 7-5, 6-0 defeat to Linda Jansson and Gouyette a 6-4, 5-7, 10-6 dismissal to Lisa Lundberg with some controversial decision calls from the Aland player along the way.

Kieron Lambert came close to the bronze medal play off, reaching the repercharge semi-final in the under 66 kg event, in which team-mate James Miles had earlier been knocked out, and Andrew Day went out at the same stage of the U81 kg competition.

The team have a rest day today and will be back in action tomorrow in the team event.

Jersey finished sixth in the ladies’ team floor and vault scoring an overall total of 93.6 which was just 0.1 behind fifth-placed Menorca. Jersey’s men’s team just missed out on a medal in the team and floor, finishing third with a score of 80.9, beating Aland in fourth place on 71.35.

Michael Coward lay just two shots off the lead after the first day of the archery recurve competition scoring 258 at 90m and 291 at 70m. Paul Bredonchel is 12th on 493, Martin Pomroy 24th on 427 and Bjarne Jacobsen in 34th on 274. In the ladies’ recurve Liz Pomroy edged team-mate Jill Collier-Webb for ninth place shooting 463 and 461 respectively.

The sailors had a challenging second day on the water with David Carter dropping to eighth place overall in the laser radial event after twice finishing 14th and David Putt in 22nd with a 15th and a 17th place.

In the laser standard event Martin Speller is 11th overall having finished 14th and 19th yesterday while Jeff Speller is 17th following a tenth and a 13th which puts the whole team in sixth place overall.

Jersey are in the bronze medal position of the team windsurfing event after four races thanks a sixth and seventh place finish from light wind specialist Michael Millar who is ninth overall individually.

Justin Horton was fifth twice yesterday which propelled him up the individual standings to eighth overall while Chris Le Masurier is 12th having finished 14th and 12th, and Steve Melia finished 17th and 16th and lies 17th overall.

The basketball team had a tough introduction to the Island Games with a 100-33 defeat by Bermuda and there is no let up today as they face the Cayman Islands.

However, the players knew they had a tough group draw and were realistic about their chances as player Dave Middleton explained: ‘While it’s great play these teams the battles for us start in the play-offs for position.’

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