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44th National Inter-School Athletics Championships   All set and ready for tomorrow’s event |17 June 2022

The National Inter-School Athletics Championships will make their return tomorrow after a two-year absence due to restrictions imposed on movement to help contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

The organisers have said they are ready and looking forward to staging the 44th National Inter-School Athletics Championships tomorrow, starting at 10am at Stad Linite.

“All the preparations are underway for the championships and heats took place from May 13 to 19,” Wilfred Adrien, director for physical education and extra-curricular activities, told members of the media on Wednesday during a press conference at the Ministry of Education headquarters.

Mr Adrien noted that following the heats, his team worked quickly to amass and analyse the results before sending out information about those who have qualified for the finals to all schools so that they could continue to better prepare for the championships.

He added that the ministry also met with their relevant partners to assist them so that the championships go well. On June 14, there was a general rehearsal for all schools on Mahé as pupils from Praslin and La Digue could not attend.

“The general rehearsal went well and this indicates that hopefully all will go well on the day itself,” added Mr Adrien.

As for Regina Prosper, director for health and safety within the Ministry of Education, she said they focused on safety measures regarding Covid-19 and the arena.

Ms Prosper said they have decided to have 25 supporters from each school to allow for social distancing and prevent the spread of the virus.

“Each group of students will have teachers supervising them as well as school wardens. The school wardens will be allocated certain equipment to ease their rounds,” explained Ms Prosper.

Ms Prosper explained that competitors and spectators will be screened at their respective schools and the same procedure will be repeated once they reach the venue.

She added that in any other eventualities, plans for evacuation and other necessary measures have been discussed and taken up by relevant stakeholders.

Regarding the safety of the competitors on the damaged tracks, Ms Prosper said they are concerned with the tracks and have posed questions to the relevant parties and to her understanding the materials and equipment needed have to be imported before being installed.

“We just hope that there is no rain on the day and everything goes well,” said Ms Prosper.

She further added that they are using whatever resources they have available to ensure the safety of the competitors. 

Ms Prosper noted that they have conducted visits, put forward their concerns and the education ministry is taking all the measures possible to avoid that athletes pick up injuries.

For assistant superintendent Jean Toussaint, to ensure that they have enough officers to deal with any eventualities, the police have refrained from approving leave applications for officers until next month and they will be patrolling the Roche Caïman sports complex area tomorrow.

“We don’t expect any extraordinary situations that will need our intervention on the day,” said Mr Toussaint. The marine police will also be patrolling the coastline near the venue, while officers will be present for crowd control.

Assistant superintendent Toussaint is also sending out a strong warning to members of the public and students, noting that since the area is a public place, activities such as alcohol consumption in public is an offence.

The National Inter-School Athletics Championships bring together over 1,100 athletes from all public and private schools from Mahé, Praslin and La Digue.

In the 43rd championships in 2019, only seven championship records were shattered in 100 track and field events and the count was two less than the previous year’s total (2018), which was nine.

The record breakers were:

- Runa Didon: Girls’ under-10 60m mini hurdles record in 10.8 seconds

- Janessa Nourice: Girls’ under-8 80m in 12.80 seconds

- Grand Anse Praslin: Girls’ under-12 4x100 relay team of Laurie Athanase, Shania Bresson, Geesha Capricieuse, Lyza Monnaie, Megan Pierre and Jerla Pouponneau with 57.93 seconds.

- Joshua Onezime: Boys’ under-18 high jump with 2.01m

- Shakira Joubert: Girls’ under-18 200m in 25.90 seconds

- Denzel Adam: Boys’ open 200m in 21.78 seconds

- Daryl Hibonne: Boys’ open 1500m in 4:29.98.

La Digue primary and Anse Royale secondary retained their silverwares as best schools, while the Seychelles Tourism Academy was the new professional centre champion, dethroning the Seychelles Institute of Technology.

La Digue primary garnered a grand total of 160 points to win the title for a fourth year running after winning the girls’ under -10, boys’ under -10, boys’ under -12, girls’ under-14 and also the Most Gold Medals Cup for primary schools.

With a grand total of 280 points after clinching the boys’ under-16, girls’ under-16, boys’ under-18 and girls’ under-18 cups, Anse Royale secondary ensured the overall best trophy once more made the trip to Anse Royale for the eighth consecutive year.

In the professional centres category, the Seychelles Tourism Academy (STA) accumulated 132 points after clinching the girls’ open cup which was enough to put them on top to dethrone 2018 winner the Seychelles Institute of Technology (SIT).


Marla Simeon


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