Athletics Weekly | Commonwealth Games Selections - Athletics Weekly

Commonwealth Games Selections

This topic contains 75 replies, has 17 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of carterhatch carterhatch 3 weeks ago.

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  • #69611
    Profile photo of laps
    Laps
    Participant

    Whatever the measures used or abused to back up your argument I am sure that a bookmaker putting up a medal winning market would have a gulf between Jazmin Sawyers chance, say 5/1 to win a medal, and Jonathon Mellor, 50/1 plus even if the field cuts up badly. Mellor may be ranked 17, but he is a very long way behind the medal contenders. Sawyers on the above Commonwealth ranking measure would have been ranked 6th in 2017 with the indoors included, 6th 2016, 7th 2015 and she won a silver in 2014 when ranked 12th. So actually a realistic contender on the basis of the last four years, but having a very poor summer this year. How relevant is that when selecting a team to win medals in April? The selectors know she is/was a fine determined competitor and likely to bring her A game to the Gold Coast, whatever that is now.

    When you are selecting a sports team you want to know how good the contenders are, not how good they were during some arbitrarily chosen period in the past given highly favourable conditions.

    #69613
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    That’s a fair point about the indoors actually – as the quali standards included indoor performances, and I know that my spreadsheets didn’t factor in indoor performances as they probably should have done. She does genuinely rank quite a bit higher than Mellor when that is factored in.

    Doesn’t change the fact that she hasn’t been in that sort of shape in the outdoor season this year, so the trend is not positive from that good start indoors. I don’t know whether she had any injuries or significant coaching changes etc which might put that into a better context. I’m not really trying to argue about her place, I was just using her as an example as it (wrongly!) matched her CWG ranking with Mellor’s.

    I don’t think in a field of 25-30 marathoners there’d be 50-1 odds against a 2:12 runner taking a medal – partly as history has suggested that that is entirely possible (e.g. Michael Shelley), and without knowing whether any decent Kenyans are actually selected it’s a bit early to make predictions I suppose. In that context though, what odds would you put on Hawkins taking a medal?

    #69617
    Profile photo of justrunfast
    justrunfast
    Participant

    Sawyers was coached by Kelly Sotherton but has now moved to Florida to train with a pretty good group out there so we shall see….

    Also do people realise that athletes will literally fly out the end of March? I can fully understand why some have turned it down

    #69618
    Profile photo of ladyloz
    Ladyloz
    Participant

    Larkim – Jazmin moved last winter to be coached by Kelly Sotherton but that obviously hasn’t worked out as following her below par summer she has now seemingly moved to Florida to yet another coaching set up.

    I actually think that the article Sidelined linked to was a very fair and balanced piece minus some of the OTT online outrage. Yes Mellor was a bit unfortunate to miss the cut but I don’t really think his omission is a massive scandal which some would have you believe.

    At an educated guess I’d probably have Sawyers at somewhere between 8/1 and 12/1 taking into account her below par 2017 summer season; Mellor if he goes is probably at least double that though not as much as 50/1. Hawkins has to be a pretty decent bet given he has placed 9th & 4th respectively at the last 2 global champs; probably between 5/1 & 7/1

    #69634
    Profile photo of laps
    Laps
    Participant

    Doesn’t change the fact that she hasn’t been in that sort of shape in the outdoor season this year, so the trend is not positive from that good start indoors.

    Sawyers had her best ever outdoor season in 2016, followed by her best ever indoor season in 2017. So there isn’t a trend, unless it’s ever upwards minus a blip. I assume that the selectors will know why she had a poor summer and will have expectations about what she will do in April. That’s their job. I think the bad summer should double her medal odds from one chance in three to one chance in six (5/1). Which would put maybe 6 to 8 competitors in front of her.

    As for the marathon I don’t know which Kenyans, Ugandans, other Africans and Australians will turn up so 50/1 was plucked out of mid-air. However the Berlin time seems to me to be a tenuous basis, in the absence of similar form at Half Marathon and 10k, for talking up Mellor’s medal chances should he still get the call-up. Comparing his Berlin time with previous Commonwealth Games winning times is just fantasy sport as far as I’m concerned.

    #69655
    Profile photo of sidelined
    sidelined
    Participant

    A lot of the arguments I’ve seen for picking Mellor don’t seem to really be about his medal chances, they’re about how English men’s marathon runners need to be encouraged by seeing one of their number selected. Scottish and possibly Welsh inspiration (depending on what Dewi Griffiths runs in Frankfurt tomorrow) isn’t deemed sufficient, obviously. I think Hawkins has got a really good chance to get on the podium.

    Jessica Turner perhaps has more of a beef at being excluded because she was fractionally faster than Meghan Beesley last season. Beesley has a much better PB but seems to be constantly injury-plagued. Turner made massive progress with her U23 silver, and though she didn’t shine at the Worlds, she couldn’t have expected to get there at the beginning of the season.

    #69658
    Profile photo of laps
    Laps
    Participant

    A lot of the arguments I’ve seen for picking Mellor don’t seem to really be about his medal chances, they’re about how English men’s marathon runners need to be encouraged by seeing one of their number selected.

    Yet the selection policy makes no bones about medals being what it’s about

    1.3 The aim of the EA Commonwealth Games selection policy is two-fold;
    1.3.1 Select athletes to achieve the highest possible number of medals at the Games.
    1.3.2 Nominate the maximum team size within the quotas given. Subject to athletes achieving the selection criteria in 3.1

    Jessica Turner perhaps has more of a beef at being excluded because she was fractionally faster than Meghan Beesley last season. Beesley has a much better PB but seems to be constantly injury-plagued. Turner made massive progress with her U23 silver, and though she didn’t shine at the Worlds, she couldn’t have expected to get there at the beginning of the season.

    So Turner’s claims rely on one run which she has not been able to back up yet. I suppose she had her chance in the National and World Championships and wasn’t able get ahead of Beesley.

    • This reply was modified 3 months, 3 weeks ago by Profile photo of laps laps.
    #69668
    Profile photo of geoff
    geoff
    Participant

    Great run by Dewi Griffiths in Frankfurt with 2.09.49. Not sure whether he will stick to the track or go for the marathon?

    #69672
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    Doesn’t change the fact that she hasn’t been in that sort of shape in the outdoor season this year, so the trend is not positive from that good start indoors.

    Sawyers had her best ever outdoor season in 2016, followed by her best ever indoor season in 2017. So there isn’t a trend, unless it’s ever upwards minus a blip. I assume that the selectors will know why she had a poor summer and will have expectations about what she will do in April. That’s their job. I think the bad summer should double her medal odds from one chance in three to one chance in six (5/1). Which would put maybe 6 to 8 competitors in front of her.

    I don’t disagree. But the selection policy is intended only to look at 2016 indoor and outdoor performances, and in that light she had a season which went backwards. I’m not trying to do her down, just trying so show that if you stick to the way the selection policy is drafted her context is less rosy than others. The projections of her going forwards and progressing into 2018 may be right – or may be that she has made some missed-steps in her choice of coaching set ups which she doesn’t yet realised and she could end up with a worse 2018 than 2017. I sincerely hope not, I’m just suggesting that predicting future form is complete guess work, and if we look at the evidence that the selectors wanted putting in front of them then the evidence can be interpreted as being not that strong for her compared to her two other teammates – after all, in March 2017 would you have said she would have finished behind them in London and completely fail to deliver? Yet the evidence then suggested she was flying!

    #69673
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    I guess with a time like that Griffiths will aim at the marathon.

    There could be an embarrassment of riches in the race to be the best british marathoner in April next year – Mo is certainly not a shoe-in to be first across the line unless he really taps into his potential in the way that Bekele did and goes 2:05 or faster. If his limit is 2:08, he won’t be shaking off Griffiths, Hawkins and Mellor quite so easily along the Embankment.

    Having said that, if only Mellor is left not going to the Gold Coast Mo should have the streets to himself as the fastest British marathoner.

    #69676
    Profile photo of ursus
    Ursus
    Participant

    There could be an embarrassment of riches in the race to be the best british marathoner in April next year – Mo is certainly not a shoe-in to be first across the line unless he really taps into his potential in the way that Bekele did and goes 2:05 or faster. If his limit is 2:08, he won’t be shaking off Griffiths, Hawkins and Mellor quite so easily along the Embankment.

    Very encouraging from Griffiths. And with Hawkins as well things are definitely starting to go in the right direction. A little. At last.

    While I don’t think Mo will ever set the marathon on fire, I do think that once he’s properly focussed on it he will be able to go a good bit quicker and probably break Jones’ excellent NR. He’s a different calibre athlete to the others; if any of them ever break 2:08.30 I’ll be very pleasantly surprised.

    #69695
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    Presume Dewi is intending to get on the Welsh team? They don’t exactly have an embarrasment of riches across the spectrum do they these days?

    #69699
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    Apparently he’s not intending running the marathon at the CWG – 10000m instead for Griffiths.

    After marathon debut, Dewi Griffiths feels he can go faster in future

    #69701
    Profile photo of laps
    Laps
    Participant

    I don’t disagree. But the selection policy is intended only to look at 2016 indoor and outdoor performances, and in that light she had a season which went backwards. I’m not trying to do her down, just trying so show that if you stick to the way the selection policy is drafted her context is less rosy than others. The projections of her going forwards and progressing into 2018 may be right – or may be that she has made some missed-steps in her choice of coaching set ups which she doesn’t yet realised and she could end up with a worse 2018 than 2017. I sincerely hope not, I’m just suggesting that predicting future form is complete guess work, and if we look at the evidence that the selectors wanted putting in front of them then the evidence can be interpreted as being not that strong for her compared to her two other teammates – after all, in March 2017 would you have said she would have finished behind them in London and completely fail to deliver? Yet the evidence then suggested she was flying!

    Finish behind them, yes because I have a higher regard for Procter and Ugen’s long jumping. Completely fail, no of course not, not back in March. Sawyers has often exceeded what I thought she would be capable of, but she is a doughty competitor who tends to rise to the occasion. Whatever the reason – the coaching switch, singing distractions, health/injury – she had a thoroughly rotten summer season. But that’s gone. Best to put a line through it unless there are lingering issues which will impact on her 2018 athletic performances as well? For us her future form might be complete guesswork but the athlete and her coach, and hopefully the selectors, should have some clue what to expect.

    Personally I wouldn’t place too much emphasis on how the selection policies are drafted. The policies have several purposes, they have to seem fair, give a clear method and all the rest of it but basically it’s the selectors job to get the best team to the Championships. Nobody will thank them if they leave an athlete with a fair medal chance at home or ruin a relay team’s chances with insufficient suitable runners.

    #73351
    Profile photo of carterhatch
    carterhatch
    Participant

    Greg Rutherford withdraws from CG

    “http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/athletics/42776077”

    Jacob Paul given the slot instead…

    I have questioned on this and other threads that selection for the England Athletics team was perhaps too early but at least there seems time to replace those athletes who are withdrawing

    • This reply was modified 4 weeks, 1 day ago by Profile photo of carterhatch carterhatch.
    #73357
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    Obviously Jonny Mellor has declared his hand. Were any others in the contentiously not-taken list subsequently added (or bizarrely omitted given Jacob Paul’s inclusion) – I’ve lost track!?

    #73358
    Profile photo of carterhatch
    carterhatch
    Participant

    … I have no insider knowledge to answer that Larkim, but clearly some athletes have decided that the CG is not in their plans (someone mentioned a particular training group are not involved en masse) and others may have more pressing matters (exams a la muir – yes I know she is Scottish) … so only knows who are on the list of available for consideration should others withdraw (until what cut off date?) … I wonder how many of them might have a storming indoors season and not be on that plane ….

    #73372
    Profile photo of stevek26
    SteveK26
    Participant

    I would mention that although a lot of big names will be missing for one reason or another, its a large squad that Team England are taking.
    Only 32 swimmers, by comparison, with potential medalists left at home.

    I would like to see some consistency across sports.

    #73388
    Profile photo of trickstat
    trickstat
    Participant

    I would mention that although a lot of big names will be missing for one reason or another, its a large squad that Team England are taking.
    Only 32 swimmers, by comparison, with potential medalists left at home.

    I would like to see some consistency across sports.

    I suspect it may have been settled a while ago that England were going to take a team of x competitors and that would be made up of a certain number in athletics, 32 in swimming etc. The fact that Greg Rutherford’s place has gone to a 400 Hurdler suggests this may be the case to me.

    #73407
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    I don’t think there is an “suspect” about that – that was precisely the way it was done, the English CWG organising committee was allocated a set number of places for their whole team, and they’ve then allocated them to the various sports, so there is an athletics “bucket” to be filled which EA I think has committed to filling up to the maximum allowed numbers.

    #73409
    Profile photo of stevek26
    SteveK26
    Participant

    This pre-setting of allocated spaces for each sport is neither equitable nor scientific.

    The inevitable conclusion of such policy is disillusionment. Selection should be on merit only.

    It seems to me we are levering in a number of ‘weak’ athletes whilst at the same time omitting some seriously good swimmers. Where is the sense in that?

    #73431
    Profile photo of laps
    Laps
    Participant

    This pre-setting of allocated spaces for each sport is neither equitable nor scientific.

    The inevitable conclusion of such policy is disillusionment. Selection should be on merit only.

    It seems to me we are levering in a number of ‘weak’ athletes whilst at the same time omitting some seriously good swimmers. Where is the sense in that?

    According to the Commonwealth Games Federation Handbook national associations can allocate up to 90 for Athletics and 65 for Aquatics. Obviously there are compelling reasons for having limits in the organisation of a games. England Athletics seems intent on using their full limit. Swimming currently has 39 selections with perhaps 15 Divers to be added which would be 54 the same number as in 2014, or 11 below the maximum allowed.

    Surely it’s the same thing as for the Rio Olympic Games, Swimming choses to select a smaller elite squad rather than use the full quota? Or maybe the Commonwealth Games England quota has been adjusted to match their selection policies? Either way the two sports are basically making their own decisions.

    #73460
    Profile photo of stevek26
    SteveK26
    Participant

    All I know is that the swimming team has omitted Imogen Clark, for example, who would be just about favourite to win the 50 Breaststroke (she currently heads the Commonwealth rankings). Meanwhile we are currently adding to an athletics team ( already containing some fairly moderate performers) with subs that would appear to have an even smaller chance of making a final.

    On the one hand I’m happy to see athletics send as many as possible; it can only be good for the sport. On the other hand I’m just not getting why British Swimming doesn’t recognise the validity of six events on the swimming programme that no other country chooses to ignore.

    This is where I would like to see UKSport take a lead.

    #73532
    Profile photo of larkim
    larkim
    Participant

    Due to the bizarre nature of the E/W/S/NI split for the CWG, UKSport and British Swimming don’t have jurisdiction of course.

    But the bottom line is that an athlete doesn’t displace a swimmer and vice versa. So whatever the English swimming body has done there isn’t really relevant.

    As for having “no-hopers” in the athletics squad, that’s just a reflection of the lack of importance of the CWG for most disciplines / sports. Of course it can be developmental, and personally I think giving athletes a chance to have that CWG experience is the least we can offer to reciprocate for the commitments the athletes make to the sport, but CWG isn’t really worth getting too excited about generally.

    #74094
    Profile photo of trickstat
    trickstat
    Participant

    Bump!

    I think the CWG can work quite well as a stepping-stone between age-group champs and the truly major senior champs. On the track it is sometimes superior to the Europeans.

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