Kyrah Scraders, right, was Bermuda's standout performer at the recent Carifta Games in Bahamas.
Kyrah Scraders, right, was Bermuda's standout performer at the recent Carifta Games in Bahamas.

Donna Watson hailed gold medallist Kyrah Scraders as a “phenomenon” after her performance at the 2013 Carifta Games in Bahamas.

The president of the Bermuda National Athletics Association (BNAA) said the future was bright for Bermuda athletics after  the country’s five-medal tally at the prestigious junior event.

The honours list from Nassau featured: Scraders (Under-17 girls’ 800m gold and 1,500m silver); Sakari Famous (Under-17 high jump silver); Juma Mouchette (Under-20 boys’ 5,000m bronze); Zakiyyah Showers (Under-17 girls’ 3,000m bronze).  

It represents one less medal than last year’s efforts, although Watson saw immense promise in a number of individual performances.

She told the Bermuda Sun: “I am pleased with our medal haul. Of course I would have loved a few more and I think we came extremely close in the 1500m with Dage Minors and the 800m with Michaiah Robinson — both placing fourth. Tiara Derosa also had a good throw that was declared a foul.”

Watson added there is work to be done with the squad tactically but praised standout Scraders.

She said: “I think we could have executed some of our tactics a little better but that is all learning experiences. 

“We had a smaller team than last year and came back with one less medal.  I was very encouraged with the performances of the athletes. We had three  reach the World Youth standards and one near miss.

‘Sight to behold’ 

“Of course, Kyrah in the 800m, who I can’t say enough about, is a phenomenal athlete and we need to invest in her. 

“For a young athlete she has always been strategic in her racing and knows how to be in the top three in every race she enters. To see her stride away from the other athlete was a sight to behold.” 

Watson also praised the performances of Justin Donawa (triple jump), Taahirah Butterfield (100m) and added that those who did medal had to “compete tough”.

She said: “To see Sakari at 13 have one last jump to secure the silver — what a tough young athlete.

“And to see Juma come from so far back and capture the bronze because he was determined to get a medal in his last Carifta Games.”

Watson said the athletes drew inspiration from the presence at the Games of Bermuda’s legendary former sprinter Debbie Jones — but said that discipline remains an area of concern.

She said: “Of course we still have a lot of work to do and our coaches and the association are up for the challenge. 

“Bermuda continues to do well in the middle distance and jumping, which seems to be Bermuda’s strength, but I would love to see our sprinting get back to the days of Debbie Jones and Cal Dill. 

“It was fantastic to have Debbie at the Games and everyone was excited to see her. She was a phenomenon like Kyrah back in the day. I see great things in store for us and hope Bermuda continue to support us.”