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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Williams-Swain aims for Stawell final

Williams-Swain aims for Stawell final

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1 Williams-Swain aims for Stawell final on Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:21 am



Williams-Swain aims for Stawell final

Mitch Williams-Swain, the 2011 Stawell Gift winner, is the only scratch marker for this year's race.

Source: AAP
14 Apr 2017

Queensland sprinter Mitchell Williams-Swain is under no illusions what it will take for him to win his second Stawell Gift.

"Really, I'm going to have to be in sub-10 shape to win," he said.

The 2011 Stawell champion, whose false start penalty probably cost him a second title in 2013, is the only scratch marker in this year's 120m Gift.

The heats will be run on Saturday, with the men's and women's finals on Easter Monday.

No scratch marker has won the men's gift at Stawell since Josh Ross in 2005 and Williams-Swain is realistic about his chances.

"My goal is to get in to that final," the 25-year-old said.

"I'm on a tight mark, off that zero, so definitely that's the goal for me.

"I was expecting around the one, 1.5, but that's what happens I guess when you get a little bit faster and you don't run as much."

Williams-Swain trains under Brett Robinson on the Gold Coast and he said two other members of their stable were more likely chances.

He pointed to youngster Jayden Gilfillan, who will run off 8.5m, and Tjimarri Sanderson-Milera (3.75m).

"If he (Gilfillan) can pull his head together and get through all the rounds, he'll definitely be at the pointy end," Williams-Swain said.

It has been a rollercoaster time for Williams-Swain since his 2011 Stawell win.

He dedicated that win to his mum Karen, who was battling cancer at the time and died later that year.

Williams-Swain and his partner Sarah Hipwell also became parents, with Ava nearly ready to start school.

He has dabbled with a local gridiron career and now owns a Tweed Heads gym.

"There have been lots of ups and downs - I've had to grow up a bit quicker, make money for the family, stuff like that," he said.

"Obviously my focus hasn't been on running.

"But now I'm finding that balance, which is really good."

Williams-Swain's ultimate goal is to break the 10sec barrier - he has a 100m personal best of 10.25sec - and make Australian teams.

"I can definitely put a bit more in to my sprinting and hopefully get back down to those 10-twos," he said.
"My ultimate, ultimate goal is to run a sub-10 - I could retire then."

Matthew Rizzo, who won last year's Ararat Gift, has a 7.5m mark and will be high among the men's favourites.

Although, like Williams-Swain, she is the only scratch marker, Toea Wisil from Papua New Guinea is the women's favourite.

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