Peacock to put the hammer down

Huw Peacock celebrated his Commonwealth Games call-up with a timely personal best.
Huw Peacock celebrated his Commonwealth Games call-up with a timely personal best.

HUW Peacock said he has put in the hard yards, now he needs to throw them.

The 22-year-old has been throwing the hammer, discus and shot put at junior and senior national championships for the last seven years but knows he will need to reproduce his best if he is to be competitive at his first major international senior tournament.

Like javelin-throwing older brother Hamish, Huw celebrated his Commonwealth Games call-up with a timely personal best.

In Canberra with Australia's other selected hammer thrower, Victorian Tim Driesen, Peacock threw 67.22 metres and said he could not be in better shape six weeks out from the Games.

That throw would have seen Peacock reach the last Commonwealth final, won by South African Chris Harmse's 73.15m, and finish seventh. It also would have made him a national champion by just six centimetres if he could have produced it against his subsequent training partner at Albert Park's Lakeside Stadium in April.

``In previous Games this would have been enough to make the final, but the standard in Glasgow will probably be a bit higher so I want to get closer to 70m,'' he said.

``I feel I'm in really good form but I want to throw over 70m and hopefully make the top eight to get into the final. That would be awesome.

``This will be the highest standard event I've done. There's more than 70 countries there, so it will be tough, but I just hope to keep improving.''

In four junior national hammer competitions, Peacock improved by nearly 11 metres, collecting two gold and two silver medals along the way.

He continued the trend as a senior, adding two more silvers before a bronze this year when he benefited from Queensland runner-up Matthew Denny's prior selection to the world junior championships to earn a Commonwealth call-up with Driesen.

Peacock finished fifth at the world youth championships in Italy in 2009 and is excited to be back on a global stage.

``I'm ecstatic,'' he said.

``I knew I had put in the hard yards and had a shot at it. I'm just looking forward to it. Getting in the village environment will be an awesome experience. It's all really exciting.

``The new uniform's a bit different, but I'll be happy to represent my country in whatever.''

Like his brother, Peacock is coached by father Evan and said watching Hamish compete at last year's world championships in Moscow was all the motivation he needed.

``That spurred me on to train harder and to get on the team with him is really exciting.

``We get along really well. We push each other all the time and are pretty supportive. 

``We can be competitive but now we're in the team together I'm sure we'll just be giving each other support.

``I've only been in the senior ranks for a couple of years so I'm still trying to find my feet. I'll keep trying to improve and will be pushing to make more senior teams after this.''

Athletics Tasmania was delighted to see the Peacocks become the second Tasmanian siblings at a Commonwealth Games after sisters Jo Millar-Cubit and Gail Luke in Auckland in 1990. 

President Mike Gunson said: ``Athletics Tasmania fought strongly for a broader Games selection policy to enable emerging athletes such as Huw to work hard and put their hands up to be in the team.

``He did just that, achieving nine Games qualifiers, including a personal best of 67.22m on the deathknock.''


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