Kiwi athletics body chief says lots of value in ’second tier’ CW Games

July 28th, 2010 - 3:30 pm ICT by ANI  

Wellington, July 28 (ANI): The Commonwealth Games may rate as a second-tier competition when it comes to athletics, but there is no doubting the value of this year’s event in New Delhi, said Athletics New Zealand high performance director Kevin Ankrom.

“New Zealanders will probably always see the Commonwealth Games as a major event, but in reality it has become kind of second-tier meet compared with the world championships or the Olympic Games,” Ankrom told NZPA today.

He said there were only a few “stellar” events — such as the 100m showcasing Jamaica’s best and the middle distances featuring a strong African contingent — but the remainder of the programme was relatively weak globally.

Ankrom said the 2012 Olympics were the real focus.

“Our performance culture is really based around London — that’s the big thing. New Delhi is a development meet for us, but it’s a high-end meeting for those kids. It’s their stepping stone to the world championships and Olympic Games,” he said.

Ankrom is hopeful this year’s smaller (13-member) squad can still produce the goods.

“No one’s a shoo-in, but the ones I’d say are pretty high on the ranking list are Val Vili, Stu Farquhar in the javelin and (decathlete) Brent Newdick.” (ANI)

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