Plenty of Cumbernauld and Kilsyth interest at Gold Coast Games
A number of local athletes and officials are taking part in the Commonwealth Games which get under way in Australia this week.
Among them are members of the Tryst Lions Wrestling Club in Cumbernauld, continuing the club’s proud history and tradition of supplying elite athletes at Commonwealth Games level.
Abronhill teenager Ross Connelly will be competing at 57kg, hoping to emulate dad David who won bronze in 1986.
Fellow club member Joe Hendry, from Edinburgh, will wrestle for Team Scotland at 97kg while Sarah McDaid will be representing Northern Ireland at 57kg.
Coach Steven McKeown said: “Our members have put a lot of hard work and dedication into their training over the last few years and the rewards have paid off and led to this fantastic opportunity of representing the club down under.”
Kilsyth’s Holly McArthur is also in the Gold Coast and will become Scotland’s first Commonwealth Games heptathlon competitor for 20 years when she takes to the track.
And Stepps boxer Nathaniel Collins is hoping to follow Charlie Flynn as 60kg champion.
But it’s not just competitors who have headed down under from Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and surrounding areas.
As well as the Tryst trio of wrestlers, Steven and Lee McKeown have also travelled to be Game Shaper volunteers for the wrestling events, having also been volunteers at Glasgow 2014.
This involves setting up the wrestling competition areas before, after and during competition, interacting with athletes officials, spectators, working with the media and acting as access control and security.
Similarly Victoria Truesdale, from Kilsyth, will have a key role to play as a technical official helping to make sure the hockey competition goes without a hitch, as she also did four years ago.
The duties of a technical official are extensive and varied. Even before games start they are involved in checking that equipment meets regulations and even checking passports to make sure players are eligible.
During the matches technical officials keep a record of the match, make sure substitutions are carried out properly and sin bin suspensions are timed correctly.
And similar to a football fourth official, Victoria may also be stationed between the team, dugouts to make sure the coaches don’t step out of line in the heat of the moment and has the power to send them off if necessary.
She said: “If they are misbehaving the umpires expect you as a technical official to deal with it, so that it leaves them to concentrate on what goes on on the park.
“It’s rare for someone to get sent out but it’s not uncommon for you to have to have a quiet word.”