WA Trio Confirmed for Australian Track and Field Team for Gold Coast Games

Athletics | Published: Tue 20 February 2018

National pole vault champion Nina Kennedy headlines the addition of a further three Western Australian track and field athletes who were today announced on the Australian Athletics Team for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.


Kennedy is joined by training partner Liz Parnov, whilst national men’s 400m hurdles champion Ian Dewhurst also met the automatic nomination criteria for inclusion on his first senior team since the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.


The trio of selected talent, join Madison de Rozario – who had her name confirmed late last year in the first wave of Athletics announcements. 51 athletes have currently met the selection standard, with the selection committee set to boost that number to a total team size of 109 with the addition of discretionary picks this week.


Kennedy has surged to career best form in 2018, highlighted by a series of personal best performances – which now stands at 4.71m – and has seen her win a maiden national title at just 20 years of age.


She will jet off for Birmingham late this week to compete at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in the first week of March.


After a tough 2017 that saw her miss out on the World Championships through injury, Kennedy said the opportunity to compete in national colours again and at a home Games would be an incredible experience.


"It’s so exciting, I haven’t worn it (Australian competition kit) in two or three years now, so to do it in front of my home crowd ... you know my family is going to be there, extended family, friends … and now that I’ve competed inside the stadium, I’m so excited, I’m just going to go for it,” she said.


Kennedy confirmed that whilst the selection to World Indoors came as a surprise she will not be taking her sights off the bigger picture of a Commonwealth Games campaign in Australia.


"My end goal was just Commonwealth Games and then all of a sudden I jumped quals and Craig Hilliard (National head coach) is like, "you’re going to World Indoors” and I was like wow this was not in my plan, so, you know it just literally just took me one coffee to sit down, reassess my goals,” she said.


"So new goals but the Commonwealth Games is still the same.”


Liz Parnov will compete at a third Commonwealth Games for Australia after her second place effort at the national championships in addition to an existing A-Qualifying standard met the selectors’ criteria.She first represented in Delhi in 2010, before reprising in Glasgow in 2014.


Dewhurst – who relocated to the Perth from Sydney at the start of 2017 – won a third career title over the weekend and returns to the Australian Flame team after his last two seasons had been cruelled by injury.


Western Australia is expected to add further athletes onto the track and field team for the Gold Coast Games when Athletics Australia finalises its squad this week.