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Gdf target joint services championships

- takes early lead with 10k Road Relay win

By Edison Jefford
The Guyana Defence Force (GDF) remained adamant that it will reclaim the elusive Joint Services Track and Field Championships’ overall title after they won the first event in the annual calendar competition that started on Sunday.
The Defence Force took an early lead when they won the opening 10km Road Relay with their established rivals, Guyana Police Force (GPF) in second. The two-point lead was all the assurance GDF needed for their title pursuit.
The Joint Services Track and Field contest will officially continue today and tomorrow at the GDF Base Camp Ayanganna Ground with heats and a few finals. Thursday is rest day with the Grand Finale and formal opening on Friday.
Coach of the Defence Force, Robert Chisholm told Kaieteur Sport yesterday that they are prepared for battle and will be bringing their weapons out of the inventory in a bid aimed at reclaiming the Championship from the Police.
“They (the athletes) are ready! I’m looking for some outstanding performances from our athletes. I think that we will reclaim it (the championship title) this year,” the GDF coach said, adding that his team understand the mission.
Chisholm informed that their preparation was well planned and executed, and based on a ‘time trial’ that was done to assess athletes’ improvement, he is satisfied that the Defence Force will mount a serious challenge this year.
“We put in a lot of hard work that saw some great improvements,” the GDF coach said, and when asked about his challenger for Police sprint ace, Michael Saul, Chisholm stated that he has two surprises for the national champion.
“Saul is a great athlete but I have two sprinters that know that if he makes a mistake there will be no time for recovery. If he makes a mistake, he’ll lose. I am not scared; I told our athletes that we are going to win,” he indicated.
As opposed to the characteristic militant approach of the GDF, the Police is basking in an aura of confidence ahead of the meet. Coach, Lyndon Wilson had stated that the Defence Force is not a threat and that was reiterated yesterday.
The GPF Team Captain, Sports Officer and Athletics Association of Guyana President, Colin Boyce told this newspaper when contacted yesterday that he “don’t see them (the Defence Force) as a threat” to their title defence.
“I know that they’ll come out hard at us and give of their best but all I see them doing is probably narrowing the gap in the points that they will be beaten by but I don’t see them posing any serious threat to the title,” Boyce believes.
The Defence Force is ahead on ten points with Police on eight. They will be looking to be on pole throughout the competition. However, the Police Force believe that the early lead is fleeting and insignificant in the three-day battle.