After 4 days of competition at the 10th NatWest Island Games in Guernsey, the Falklands have won silver and two bronze medals. Graham Didlick, who missed the 2001 Island Games on the Isle of Man, scored 290 in the Police Pistol 1 Individual event, to take second place and a silver medal.
Four years ago at the 1999 Island Games in Gotland, he scored 289 but had to settle for 4th place. Then on Thursday morning he snatched the bronze medal in the N.P.A. Service Pistol B Individual competition, to add to his earlier silver.
After gaining the silver, Graham said, I'm highly delighted to win a medal for the Falklands - my 10th in the Island Games, particularly as I had to borrow a pistol in order to participate at the Games. After coming close on several previous occasions in this particular discipline, I feel very happy at finally winning a medal'.
Stringent laws which now apply to the owning of hand guns in Britain, meant the cost of conveying pistols from the Falklands to Guernsey, through a recognized security company, was prohibitive. Friendly shooters on the host Island came to the rescue and supplied pistols for the Falklands team members.
Andy Torode of Guernsey took the gold medal with a score of 296, while Derek Wilde from the Isle of Man was back in 3rd place, winning bronze, with a score of 286.
Graham Didlick now has a haul of 11 medals, being made up of one gold, four silvers, and six bronze.
In the Service Pistol B Andy Torode established a new Games record with a score of 115. Chris Parkin of Guernsey was awarded the silver as he scored more bull eyes than Graham Didlick, although both shooters scored 96.
The Falklands shooter's achievement in winning silver and bronze medals is quite magnificent, as he beat competitors from the much larger populated islands of Jersey, Gotland, Isle of Man, Gibraltar and Rhodes.
The full-bore rifle team of Gareth Goodwin and Chris McCallum, won a surprise bronze medal for the Falklands in the Queens Prize Pairs competition. As expected Jersey and Guernsey contested the destination of the gold and silver medals, but the Falklands pairing were on top form and finished 36 points ahead of the more fancied, and much bigger, Isle of Wight.
Gareth Goodwin, fresh after breaking all of the Falklands National records at last year's Commonwealth Games, was in fine form once again. He scored a total of 287, made up of scores of 47, 48, 49 on the first day, and 72 and 71 on the second. Chris McCallum, competing in his third Island Games, cracked home scores of 46, 49, 45, 66 and 73 for a total of 279. Their aggregate of 566 was good enough to comfortably take the bronze medal. Jersey won the gold with their shooters Cliff Mallett and Peter Stock scoring a combined 589, while the host Island, Guernsey, disappointed the home supporters, having to settle for the silver on 585.
In the Individual Queens Prize competition, Gareth Goodwin finished 6th with a score of 381. After a slightly disappointing run of lower than expected scores, his form improved dramatically at the final stages and he hit the maximum of 75, but it was too late to make any impression on the medal winners. Chris McCallum scored 377 to finish in 7th position. Peter Stock of Jersey took the gold with a score of 399, Peter Jory of Guernsey the silver with 397 and Phil Ogier of Jersey winning bronze on 390.
The Falklands Badminton players produced a highly satisfactory performance. Douglas Clark won both his singles matches in the team group stages against Gibraltar and the Orkney Islands, but on each occasion the Falklands went down 1-4. The match against Bermuda proved to be an exciting affair, and was tied at 2-2, before the Bermudian mixed doubles pairing of Rick Dorusch and Amanda Smith edged out Doug Clark and Nikki Luixton to clinch the match 3-2. Earlier Trudi Clarke had beaten Anna Janczewska 11-2, 13-10, while Nikki Luxton and Lyn Brownlee teamed up to beat Amanda Smith and Tracy De Silva 15-12, 15-11 in the doubles.
In the mens singles open event, Doug Clark progressed to the second round. This is the first time that a Falklands badminton player has progressed beyond the first round. He beat Shetland's Graham Keith 15-7, 15-7, before going out to K Smulter of Aland 2-15, 6-15.
Glenn Ross, the Falklands lowest handicap player, soon established his skills on the La Grande Mare golf course. His 77 in the first round, which included 9 pars, bettered Leon Marsh's previous best of 82, by 5 strokes. In the second round Glenn lowered the record to 76, but battling Roy Smith recovered from a 'disastrous' 100 on the opening day to also score 76, with eleven pars, and become joint record holder. Kevin Clapp recorded scores of 88 and 83 while Chris Clarke was left in 50th place after rounds of 93 and 90.
Sharon Marsh, winner of a silver certificate two years ago during the Isle of Man games, carded scores of 98 and 96 over the first two rounds.
Swimmers Donna Triggs and Kerri Ross both achieved personal bests in several of their events at the Beau Sejour Leisure Centre.Donna knocked more than 2 seconds of her p.b. in the 50m Freestyle, recording a time of 33.77. Kerri recorded a time of 50.23 in the 50m Breaststroke - her p.b. being 53.44.
On the track two young Falklands athletes enjoyed their first experience of International competiton. Kyle Biggs, who carried the flag for the Falklands at the Opening Ceremony broke the one minute barrier, recording a time of 59.44 in the 400m.
16 year old Roxanne Morrison, who is more accustomed to winning the tough cross-country Mt. Tumbledown run, was timed at a very creditable 6 minutes and 3 seconds in the 1,500m.