Stewart McSweyn found plenty of positives from his maiden Commonwealth Games experience after backing up his fifth place in the 5000m by finishing 11th in the 10,000m.
In a fast race won in a new Commonwealth Games record of 27:19.62 by Uganda’s Joshua Cheptegei, McSweyn was roared to the finish by the capacity Carrara Stadium crowd in 28:58.22.
“It’s still a good learning experience being against a world-class field and that was a Games record which shows it wasn’t an easy pace,” said the 22-year-old King Islander.
“It was a pretty crazy pace. I thought I was ready for any kind of race but I think I still felt a bit heavy from that 5k. That took a bit out of me, but no excuse, I’ve just got to get better.
“I was happy to sit at the back because it was quick, pretty much Aussie record pace. I knew I just had to relax early. Previously when I’ve done 10k I’ve got to halfway feeling comfy but today I had a look up at 13 laps to go and knew it was going to be a long day from there.
“With a couple of laps to go I thought at least break 29 so I was happy I could rally a bit in that last couple of laps and dip under that.
“But I definitely took some good experience from it and have had one good race here so I’ve gained some confidence from the championship.”
McSweyn said expectations had been pretty high at his Melbourne Track Club.
“Definitely happy with the 5k, but 10k – a lot of room for improvement needed,” he said
“But I’m only 22, I’ve still got time to get up to the world level that was showcased tonight.”
Asked what he considered his optimum event, McSweyn, who has experience at athletics, cross-country and university world championships, said: “Right now the 5k. I just don’t think I’ve had the hard years of running yet to be competitive at the 10k.
“At world level I think I’m ranked 21 in the 5k right now so I think in any field I can be competitive on the world stage.
“My next goal is to get overseas and run fast. I definitely think I can run a fast 10k so if I can do one over in Europe I want to make sure I can at least get that Tassie record.
“David Chettle holds it with 28.17. It’s one of the ones I don’t have so that and the 1500m are the ones I’ll be trying to get overseas this year.”
Earlier in the day, Hobart duo Jack Hale and Hamish Peacock both qualified for their respective finals while sharing the Carrara Stadium athletics track.
Peacock, 27, threw the longest in the javelin with a third-round 81.22m while Hale, 19, was in the Australian 4x100m relay team which progressed by finishing its heat second behind South Africa.
Peacock’s javelin final is scheduled to start at 2.35pm on Saturday with the 4x100m relay final at 2.40pm.
Launceston basketballers Chris Goulding and Lucas Walker begin Tasmanian involvement on the penultimate day of the Games when the Boomers face a semi-final against Scotland at 10.03am.
Meanwhile Hobart’s Eddie Ockenden and Jeremy Edwards will both feature in the hockey medal matches from 7.02pm having played their semi-final against England late on Friday night.
THE STORY SO FAR
Ariarne Titmus: 200m freestyle, heat 1st, final SILVER; 4x200m freestyle relay GOLD; 800m freestyle, heat 1st, final GOLD; 400m freestyle, heat 1st, final GOLD
Jake Birtwhistle: men’s triathlon, SILVER; mixed teams relay GOLD
Amy Cure: women’s team pursuit, qualifying 1st, final GOLD; women’s points race, 7th; women’s scratch race GOLD
Georgia Baker: women’s points race, 21st
Rebecca Van Asch: bowls, women’s fours, d Papua New Guinea 41-1, d Cook Islands 15-9, d Namibia 23-9, d Malaysia 14-13, quarter-final d Malaysia 14-12, semi-final d Canada 10-9, final d South Africa 18-16 GOLD; women’s triples, d Papua New Guinea 32-12, d India 20-11, d Canada 20-13, d Fiji 24-9, quarter-final d Northern Ireland 30-5, semi-final d England 16-13, final d Scotland 21-12 GOLD
Chris Goulding, Lucas Walker: men’s basketball, d Canada 95-55, d New Zealand 79-73, d Nigeria 97-55
Eddie Ockenden, Jeremy Edwards: men’s hockey, d South Africa 4-0, d Scotland 6-1, d Canada 4-0, d New Zealand 2-1
Huw Peacock: men’s hammer, 11th
Stewart McSweyn: men’s 5000m, 5th; 10,000m, 11th
Kaity Fassina: women’s 90kg weightlifting, SILVER
Sam Walker: men’s T38 100m, 6th
Danielle McConnell: women’s hammer, 8th
Hamish Peacock: men’s javelin, qualification 1st
Jack Hale: 4x100m relay, heat 2nd
TOMORROW’S SCHEDULE (SATURDAY APRIL 14)
10.03am basketball, semi-finals, Australia v Scotland (Goulding, Walker, GC Convention Centre)
2.40pm men’s 4x100m relay final (Hale, Carrara Stadium)
2.35pm javelin final (Peacock, Carrara Stadium)
7.02pm Hockey, finals (Edwards, Ockenden, GC Hockey Centre)