North West youngsters to take on nation’s best

HE’S shown it many a time on the basketball court and now Drummond Public School’s Matar Maluach is showing his jumping prowess on the athletics field.
Nanjing Night Net

The 12-year old is the best highjumper in the state in his age.

Now he’s he’s off to take on the best in the country.

Maluach is one of several North West athletes who will be running and jumping for NSW in the School Sport Australia 12yrs and Under Athletics Championships.

They get underway in Adelaide today.

Kootingal’s Ella Heeney and Bellata’s Bella Stewart will also be competing.

Heeney has had a great year on the track, starting with breaking the Arinya zone senior girls’ 800m record.

It had stood since 1995 and she cut almost five seconds off it.

She went on to win gold at the State Championhips in the 12-13yrs girls with a time of 2mins 21.44secs.

Just last weekend she broke the 800m record at the Tamworth Little Athletics Club’s gala day, bettering her time from the zone titles by eight seconds.

Like Maluach, Stewart will compete in the high jump after picking up silver in the 11yrs girls.

She and the winner cleared an identical height of 1.48m.

Maluach jumped 1.67m to finish on top of the podium at the state carnival and is aiming to go even higher down in Adelaide.

“Maybe beat the record, which is 1.76cm,” he said.

That’s 6cm higher than his personal best – 1.70m – and only 10cm under his own height.

It’s the second NSW team he has made this year after also being selected in the primary basketball side.

The nationals for those were held in Melbourne in August, and Maluach was a big part of NSW winning the title.

“It’s the first time they’ve won since 1984,” he said.

“I went all right. I was the third top scorer (for the carnival).”

But while basketball is in the genes – his two brothers are both state representatives – and he’s been playing it for a little while, this is his first year jumping.

“I just did it at the school carnival,” he said.

It turned out he was pretty good at it.

He also qualified to compete in the shot put and long jump at the state carnival, finishing seventh in both.

In the high jump he was 3cm better than his closest rival.

He’ll be accompanied by teacher and coach Mrs Muir down to Adelaide and has been training every lunchtime with her in preparation, with the Armidale High School kindly lending mats for him to practise on.

The nationals run through to Tuesday.

Drummond Public School’s Matur Maluach will represent his state for the second time this year, this time in the high jump. Photo: Barry Smith 201112BSA02

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.