Kaisey Griffith. * Photo by Alex Masters
Kaisey Griffith. * Photo by Alex Masters
Bermuda's gymnasts were worth their weight in gold at this year's Island Games - literally.

The youngsters ended up with a grand total of 22 medals - all but ten of Bermuda's haul.

The other big winners in Aland were the golfers, the swimmers, the sailors and the men's basketball team who clinched gold with an incredible overtime win against Menorca on Saturday.

And 15-year-old sprint sensation Jeneko Place's silver medal in the 200m was another highlight.

Jon Gazzard, secretary of the Bermuda Island Games Association, said Bermuda's 80-strong team, which arrived back on the island on Sunday, and will be feted by the Premier at City Hall, had enjoyed an excellent Games.

"This was the smallest team we have ever taken to the Island Games so to come back seventh over all speaks volumes about the performance.

"The gymnasts were the big success story. They were worth their weight in gold in terms of the medals they brought in and Kaisey (Griffith) was the star of the show."

Kaisey Griffith

Griffith, 16, finished the tournament with eight gold medals and one silver medal.

Gazzard said Bermuda had excelled in areas where they had been traditionally strong.

But he saw plus points too for the sports that competed well without bringing home quite as much silverware.

"I think the swimmers, considering there was only five of them and this was a development team, did exceptionally well. If the development swimmers are this good it bodes well for the future.

"It was great to get a shooting team to the Games for the first time and they know what they have to work on now."

Gazzard said the Games in Aland had also been an eye opener for the Bermuda Island Games organizing committee for 2013.

President Gary Madeiros got his first look at the logistics and infrastructure requirements that go into hosting the event and there was plenty of food for thought for local organisers who are preparing to host more than 3,000 athletes in four years time.

Gazzard said the work towards Bermuda 2013 had already begun. Ideas such as using cruise ships or high schools converted into dormitories have been discussed as a potential solution to the issue of accommodation for athletes.